Jamaican High Commission United Kingdom

Jamaican high commission

Embassy Providing Guidance and Support to Jamaicans in China

January 30, 2020

Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade Kamina Johnson Smith says her Ministry continues to closely monitor the welfare of the Jamaican community in China regarding the spread of the Coronavirus across that country.

“Since my last communication to the media, our Embassy in Beijing has strengthened its outreach to Jamaicans in the Wuhan area of Hubei Province. The number of persons with whom we are in contact via WhatsApp chat group has now increased to 29, as we have added persons there who had not previously registered with the embassy,” Johnson Smith said in a statement this afternoon.

“In addition to using the embassy’s email, the chat group has been instrumental in facilitating the registration of nationals with the embassy and for allowing them to keep in touch with each other for support. Our embassy staff has also of course been fielding telephone calls from Jamaican nationals in other locations in China and offering advice and guidance,” she added.

Johnson Smith said that in order to address the concerns being raised by the persons in the Wuhan group regarding food and supplies, the embassy was able to obtain from the Hubei Foreign Affairs office a list of 24-hour hotlines available to foreigners to provide them with assistance and guidance during the crisis.

She said this was immediately shared with Jamaicans and she said that they have since had direct assistance through this medium.

She assured that the embassy will follow up with the authorities on their behalf if they experience further challenges, while also recognising that all persons in Wuhan are going through a challenging time.

“The embassy participated in a briefing of the Diplomatic Corps in Beijing on 28th January 2020 which addressed comprehensive efforts by the Chinese Government to curtail the spread of the Coronavirus and to treat those affected while also addressing the WHO position on its status. Here in Jamaica, we continue to work closely with Health and Wellness Minister, Dr Christopher Tufton and his team, and have also had discussion with members of the Diplomatic Corps concerning international cooperation and measures to manage developments as they unfold,” the foreign minister stated.

Johnson Smith advised Jamaican in China to continue to monitor information and advisories issued by both Chinese and Jamaican officials and to cooperate in all efforts to contain the spread of the virus.

She added, “I am encouraging persons here in Jamaica who have families or associates in China to make contact with them and inform the Ministry here in Kingston of any new circumstances.”

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