US to evacuate consulate staff, some citizens from Wuhan

The State Department, in an emailed statement, said some private US citizens will be able to board a "single flight" leaving Wuhan on January 28 bound for San Francisco.

People wearing face masks walk past luxury boutiques in the Sanlitun shopping district in Beijing, China, as the country is hit by an outbreak of the new coronavirus, January 25, 2020 (photo credit: REUTERS/THOMAS PETER)
People wearing face masks walk past luxury boutiques in the Sanlitun shopping district in Beijing, China, as the country is hit by an outbreak of the new coronavirus, January 25, 2020
(photo credit: REUTERS/THOMAS PETER)
BEIJING -  The US State Department said on Sunday it will evacuate personnel from its Wuhan consulate to the United States and will offer a limited number of seats to private US citizens on a flight out of the epicenter of China's coronavirus outbreak.
The State Department, in an emailed statement, said some private US citizens will be able to board a "single flight" leaving Wuhan on January 28 bound for San Francisco, requesting those interested to contact the US embassy in Bejing with their personal information.
"This capacity is extremely limited and if there is insufficient ability to transport everyone who expresses interest, priority will be given to individuals at greater risk from coronavirus," said the statement.
Wuhan, a city of 11 million people in central China, is in virtual lockdown following a deadly outbreak of a new coronavirus that emerged there at the end of last year. Public transport, including airplanes and trains, have been suspended.
Other countries, including France and Australia, have said they are considering options to get their citizens out of Wuhan.
China's foreign ministry said in a statement issued on Saturday it is making arrangements and providing assistance to the US  government to facilitate the evacuation.


Tags Wuhan