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British Citizens Abroad: FCO Help to Return Home

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 1:21 pm on 24th March 2020.

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Photo of Dominic Raab Dominic Raab The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs 1:21 pm, 24th March 2020

In general, nothing in the transition period regime is hampering the repatriation effort. Indeed, the hon. Gentleman is right to say that, given the number of Brits in European countries, we also have more airline capacity coming back. It is probably easier to pick up the phone to some of our European colleagues, who we know very well. The key thing is the bilateral dialogue: the calls I am making, and those that our embassies and junior Ministers are making hour by hour—not even day by day—to cover all the particular circumstances. The biggest problem is perhaps not some of the cases we all know about, such as people in Spain and Peru. Once we are on the case we can put a plan in place to get those nationals home. What catches out both British nationals and missions abroad is the fast-changing situation in smaller jurisdictions or those to which people travel less.