Thai Students Among First to Return to China, Ambassador Says

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Students from Thailand will be among the first allowed to return to China once the country reopens its borders, the Chinese Ambassador to Thailand Han Zhiqiang said during an online interview with the media.

“If the Chinese government is ready to allow hundreds of thousands of international students to return, Thai students will be among the first,” ambassador Zhiqiang said.

As Thaiger reports, he stressed that education counselors will work to coordinate students from Thailand and Chinese educational institutions in order to help them to get back to in-person education soon, adding that he is also working with education officials regarding Thai students’ return to China once the pandemic is in control.

According to Zhiqiang, there was an increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in China imported from abroad, and that has forced the country to carry out mass testing and surveillance in order to reduce the spread of the virus.

As a result, he said that special measures had to be taken, in particular within universities due to large crowds of people being present and higher chances to get infected.

Thailand is the second country sending most students to China, with more than 30,000 of them being enrolled in educational programs at the country’s universities, just behind South Korea.

In an interview with Erudera, an Aeronautical Engineering student from Malawi, East Africa, who is pursuing studies at Beihang University, earlier said that the ban has been a huge drawback for him as an engineering student, mainly due to lack of exposure to practical content which is necessary for his major.

I have tried to get in touch with the Ambassador of the Republic of China in my country, but my message was left unattended, I equally tried to talk to the Head of academic affairs in the International School in my university, but they only advised me to take online courses until I can go back or else drop out until We can go back which would not be ideal for me,” the student said.

International students have not been allowed to enter China since March last year when the country closed its borders after the pandemic outbreak. Students stranded abroad due to travel restrictions imposed to reduce the spread of the COVID-19 have continually called on the Chinese government to allow them to return to China, pointing out that the situation has also left them in distress.

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