Latvia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs is warning Latvians abroad that flights to Rīga over the next few days will likely represent their last chance to return home for quite a while.
“In the interests of public health and under conditions of the state of emergency, no state-organised repatriation flights are scheduled to take place after 27 March. At the same time, to enable travellers who are currently in far removed regions with irregular traffic to Europe to return to Latvia, the very last repatriation flight operated by airBaltic will take place from Frankfurt on 30 March,” the ministry said in a release.
“Not all Latvians who are currently travelling abroad have decided to return to Latvia. Individuals decide on their own whether to make the return journey, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs respects the choice Latvian nationals have made to remain in places where they happen to be as well as the choice to travel in the first place,” it added. “Not all the travellers have been able to return to Latvia by the end of March due to restrictions on transportation on the route home. Therefore, the Latvian Foreign Ministry continues cooperation with other EU Member States to ensure the repatriation to Europe of those travellers who need it. Those repatriation flights are not regular or standard; they bring back the nationals of various EU countries from third countries outside the EU but they do not ensure that passengers are transported directly to their home countries. Therefore, from April onwards, possibilities for return will be considered on a case-by-case basis, when travellers are gathered at certain places,” it said. The ministry added that people who have registered with the Consular Register or written to [email protected] , should not repeat the same registration.
“If you have not registered yourselves with the Consular Register , please do it only once. We shall contact you if a repatriation flight is arranged that matches your current location. At the same time, we urge travellers themselves to seek ways of reaching Latvia.
“We also expect a message from those who have returned to Latvia or have decided not to return during the period when the state of emergency is in force.