Did the Canadian government underestimate the coronavirus? Did the Canadian government underestimate the coronavirus?Hundreds of Canadians have finally not returned from the coronavirus drinking Chinese city of Wuhan. They will not ask for the next 2 weeks in quarantine at a military base in Ontario CFB Trenton before they’re allowed to go home and more Canadians are set to come home. This on the next plane, all this comes no more than a week after countries like the United States and the UK started getting their own citizens out. Why the long delay did Canada take the threat of coronavirus seriously enough at the beginning and a tension, China made the evacuation more complicated to find out.
I met with the foreign affairs minister Francois, fit it champagne at his headquarters, just down the street with champagne great to have you here. Thank you for having me now. You’Ve got about 213 Canadia that give us a sense of their journey home and what they are now going through in quarantine. So we had what we called the first Canadian flight 274 passengers left. You one stop in Vancouver for refueling and then went to Trenton and now they’re. Currently in Trenton, we had also security 9 seats on a US flight at which went from Hulu on refueling Vancouver in Vancouver.
We transfer them onto civilian plane to bring them to Trenton. So now we have about, we have 213 Canadiens, that’s about two-thirds of the Canadiens. You had asked us initially to be repatriated and now they’re going to the quarantine. , Which we we had indicated that we’re going to have second Canadian plane, because one of the positive things is having a bit of time in between it’s allowing us to make sure we Can contact everyone who wants to come back because, as you know, we need to provide the Manifest 24 hours before departure, so we’re going to be contacting all the other families and the numbers.
I’Ve been changing yourself throughout the week because we have people who decided. Finally, not to come and we always have 20 % no-show. This is consistent with the Japanese and other nations which have repatriated now. What we’re focusing on we have to Emergency theme in 1/2, counselor services for those are going to remain and and obviously the next flight. We need to organize for the plane, lands and then get the Manifest and then turned around and picks up the rest of the can. The question that you’ve been asked a lot, and I just want to get into it – is why it took me longer than about seven other countries at eight or nine days after the Americans got almost everyone out of the bigger plane, and the question is even though Canadians didn’t register how about you, but I’ve never registered with the embassy.
When I travel and – and let’s be candid – it’s not something Canadian to should you have proactively anticipated the need for a plane, knowing they’re hundreds of Canadians there. I just got the plane 9 days ago. Give you a sense of perspective. The first US plane was a plane creating Consular officials from one under the Vienna convention, their family and few Americans, and for damn they took about 7-8 days. To get the authorization to land was exactly the first plane. And if you look at, for example, the Japanese, the Japanese knew that they had big manufacturing facilities in one which had a lot of people to three steps you have when you assess what to do in an emergency situation.
First was to assess, obviously the need and, as you said, we are very pleased that Canadians are registering and in greater numbers to our website, because it’s a voluntary registration when we started that we have two Canadians when indicated that they wanted to be repatriated. That’S Pike. 250, it was around January 27th. At that point we said we need to charge it up like we did that and the tournament was to make sure we got the permits and we organize a grounder just so you don’t think you underestimated the severity of the growing crisis, because that I’ve been working Very hard since but everyday you wait, the numbers go up, the complexities go up.
As you know, it just becomes more and more difficult by the day. Cuz things are getting worse, not better. Did you underestimate the severity of things and all the people? We add the moment we saw the numbers, we reacted appropriately in a measured way, because, obviously you need to tailor your response with the number of people wants to come and as you’ve seen throughout the week, we have people who decided to stay. They prefer for us to prove Consular assistance. The biggest part of the operation is actually the ground Logistics, because from the moment someone leave the residence to basically the airport.
You have like 20 checkpoints. We need to provide the Manifest from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, but imagine distance to flow down almost the police officer in front of your door in the streets where you live and making sure that people can actually get to the airport. That was the most complex part of the operation. To other things, people don’t appreciate. Canada is not a boy rides to repatriate, but we’ve decided to in the past, outside of the repatriation the evacuation in Lebanon. Can they charge by the government to come home? Has your government considered asking NE connait he’s being repatriated to pay any part of that travel as he is actual Canadian policy so from they wanted their? The Prime Minister said the tone.
The first thing we have is everything we could do to help these people, and I would say what distinguished the situation to is. Evan is that the people are actually in a quarantine area. Commercial means to get out of the quarantine area because the airport is in lockdown, the streets are in lockdown, so we sin under those circumstances, like every country in the International Community said we need to fly in there, there’s no way for people to get out at The same time, you saw me probably over the week advising Canadiens Warren Channel non-essential travel to see commercial means to come back to Canada, because Adidas case was very exceptional, where it where people could not just get out of the area and we needed to bring them Home the Liberals new ambassador to China, Dominic Barton, was out of committee and he said relations are strained in a sense of blinding restatement of the obvious.
We all how bad relationship between China and Canada is has. I know you’re working closely with Chinese officials on this and we’ve got. As you say, two-thirds of the Canadiens out has been difficult relationship with China made this more difficult and more complex may be caused the delay, no point I’ll be very transparent. The Canadian at the moment we started to stage of the operation I’ll, give you a sense of perspective. When asked to speak to my counterpart, the foreign minister in China, we going to call Within flowers, and we spoke for 40 minutes in international standards.
That’S very quick to get considering the despised and the magnitude of what they have to deal with. We wanted to extract about 300 people. They have 1.2 billion people to deal with in a health emergency from day one. They appreciated Canada’s needs and we have been working and we got the Visas en time we get the permit to land. The first delay did you saw, you know where we said it was because we have too much crust when to take off at 9. What to do with the authorization? Then we missed the window in the staging operation in China, so for people to understand countries of the International Community and only land during the night, because during the day they are spacers used by the people’s Liberation Army.
With all this, knowing nothing, nothing, nothing, nothing that was visible today or Mills, and there has been no cross-pollination about the situation with it eventually temperature in position that this was the first and foremost priority for the Kenyan government that we wanted to release of Michael’s, bringing Michaels fabric, we also one 7 super mystery Schaumburg, and, and we will continue to do that, every single opportunity. I have the case of Miss matting, as you would expect, and, and we’re agreed even to try to when we’re going to be in Munich in about a week.
So is it fair to say that, because of the very ongoing communication over coronavirus, you had better communication? Do you think you’ve moved the ball down field on the two Michaels? I would say that because we’re pursuing, for example, what I’ve called he’ll diplomacy that this is giving us the more contact point we can have with the Chinese authorities. I would say the better to get to a resolution of the cases of the my communication over coronavirus.Foreign Affairs Minister Champagne explains what Canadians are going through in quarantine in Trenton and how Canada is preparing for what’s next.
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