A Greek ferry boat arrived at the port of Irakleio on Crete on Saturday morning with another 2,800 third country nationals evacuated from strife-torn Libya. Most of the foreign nationals were identified as Chinese citizens.
Several thousand Chinese nationals have already been ferried from Libya to Crete, where they are being hosted until their repatriation.
Meanwhile, the first flights to China carrying a total of 541 evacuees from Libya departed from Hania airport on Saturday afternoon.
According to the Chinese ambassador in Greece the massive repatriation effort to transport Chinese evacuees from Libya via Greece will take an estimated 10 days.
Two more Greek ferries return from Libya with foreign evacuees
Two more Greek ferries docked at Iraklion port on the island of Crete on Sunday morning carrying more than 4,200 third-country evacuees from Libya, the majority of them Chinese nationals. The first ship, the Hellenic Spirit, arrived in Iraklion port just before 9:00 a.m., carrying some 2,120 evacuees, while the second vessel, the Olympic Champion, arrived in port two hours later with another 2,130 evacuees on board.
The foreign nationals were put up in local hotels until arrangements are made for their return to their home countries.
More Greeks airlifted from Libya; embassy remains open
Another eight Greek nationals, along with 11 Cypriot citizens, were airlifted from Libya on Saturday aboard a German air force C-160, which took off from the Nafoora airport and landed at Crete’s Souda Bay air station.
According to reports, the Greeks and Cypriots had been stranded in a remote construction worksite in the desert region of Gialo, due south of Benghazi.
Greece’s embassy in Tripoli remains open to assist remaining Greek citizens or ethnic Greeks in the North African country, the foreign ministry emphasized on Saturday.