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Mar 20, 2020

Coronavirus Update: FM says special working groups are helping Hungarians return home from abroad

The foreign minister held a video conference with his Austrian, Croatian, Italian and Slovenian counterparts yesterday to discuss the latest developments regarding the novel coronavirus epidemic.

Péter Szijjártó, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, held a video conference with his Austrian, Croatian, Italian and Slovenian counterparts yesterday to discuss the latest developments regarding the novel coronavirus epidemic.

In a Facebook post on Thursday, Minister Szijjártó said that Luigi di Maio, the Italian foreign minister, “had worrying numbers to report”, citing tens of thousands of confirmed cases in Italy. Minister Szijjarto quoted Di Maio as saying that the virus and the dangers it poses should not be underestimated.

The minister called on Hungarians wanting to return home from abroad to do so as soon as possible or let [the authorities] know if they are experiencing difficulties. “We will face travel restrictions for many months,” he said.

The foreign ministry has set up a working group to organize the return of Hungarians stranded abroad. The group has been in talks with other central European countries to fly Hungarians home from distant countries.

The minister said Austria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia and Slovenia agreed earlier to coordinate their actions and share information.

A call center set up for advice on the coronavirus can be reached on +36-80-277-455 and +36-80-277-456 or by email koronavirus@bm.gov.hu