Covid, foreign students including Italians isolated in 2 hotels in Malta
LA VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS/MNA) – Malta has registered a new record of positive cases of COVID-19 since last March. The local health authorties announced that in the past 24 hours, 179 new cases were confirmed, bringing the total numer of active cases to 634.
Maltese Deputy Prime Minister and Health Minister Chris Fearne is currently in self-isolation after a family member tested positive for coronavirus. The government said the minister did not test positive, however, he would be adhering to the measures imposed by the health authorities.
Malta is currently experiencing a surge in Covid cases and concerns are being also raised that there might be more foreign students infected with COVID-19. In recent days, the Maltese health authorities identified dozens of foreign students from 12 English schools who were tested positive for COVID-19.
The authorities did not release any details about the nationality of the foreign students stranded in Malta due to last week’s government decision to close all English Language schools by Wednesday, 14th. However, it is known that over 150 Italian students are stuck in Malta, most of them kept in quarantine while others in isolation. The Italian students including other foreign students mainly from Spain and France are currently staying in two hotels; Qawra Palace Hotel in Bugibba and Corinthia Marina in Paceville.
However, all Italian students were transferred to the same hotel in St. Julian’s. According to reports on Facebook, Liguria Region Governor Giovanni Toti spoke on the phone with Italian Foreign Minister Lugi Di Maio to check about the recent developments and when the students are expected to return from Malta. “I thank Minister Di Maio for his interest in the case of the youngsters stuck in Malta”, Toti said. Over last weekend, the Italian Foreign Minister confirmed that the Italian students and staff were transferred from Qawra Palace Hotel to Corinthia Marina Hotel, where other Italian groups confirmed positive to COVID-19 were also staying.
A group of eight youngsters from Imperia – seven boys and a girl from Imperia are being kept in isolation. The group arrived in Malta for a post-graduation vacation at the end of June, but on returning to Italy, while undergoing medical tests at Maltàs international airport, the only one unvaccinated was found positive to COVID-19. As a result the whole group was then placed in isolation.
There is also the financial issue. According to a family member of one of the Italian students stranded in Malta, the families have to cover the addition costs in Malta. “If there will be 14 days left, we have counted an expense of about 14 thousand euros per family”, photographer Adolfo Ranise, father of one of the Imperian students declared.
The Italian Embassy in Malta is following the latest developments very closely, and is in constant contact with the Maltese authorities to ensure that the treatment to all the Italian nationals stranded in Malta meets the standards agreed with the local authorities.
The Italian Foreign Ministry is being asked by family members and local authorties in Italy to activate all diplomatic procedures to allow the repatriation of those students stranded in Malta who were tested negative to COVID-19.