Marshall Islands starts planning to bring citizens home

5:42 am on 20 July 2020

The Marshall Islands government is preparing a phased return of hundreds of citizens stranded abroad by Covid-19.

Hundreds of Marshallese are still stranded in Hawaii, Guam and the US mainland after the country closed its borders in March.

An agreement will see the returned citizens quarantined for 21 days at the US missile testing site at Kwajalein.


Already, soldiers and a US diplomat have travelled to the country and quarantined at the base.

Health minister Bruce Bilimon said he expected the flights to start in about September.

"We are not comfortable to do it before then," he told the Marianas Variety.

He said the aim, at least initially, is to use secure quarantine facilities at Kwajalein, which the US Army has offered to provide.

Key elements of any repatriation will be Covid-19 testing prior to departure, quarantine prior to getting on an aircraft, quarantine in the Marshall Islands, and multiple Covid-19 tests before release.

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