Chartered flight carrying Chinese students to the UK lands in Northern Ireland

Source: Global Times Published: 2020/9/21 1:26:32

Photo: VCG

The first chartered flight since the coronavirus pandemic, carrying 400 Chinese students studying at Queen's University Belfast, arrived at the Northern Ireland city on Saturday. 

The Qatar Airways flight left Beijing on Friday. Two thirds of the students are new students.

The Chinese government and the Consulate-General of China in Belfast provided support for the chartered flight, according to a statement. 

Queen's University Belfast is the first among British universities to arrange chartered flight to bring Chinese students to the UK, the Xinhua News Agency reported. There are about 1,500 Chinese students studying at Queen's University Belfast. 

Consul general Zhang Meifang was quoted as saying in the statement that the chartered flight is also the first non-stop commercial flight from China to the Northern Ireland, which has set an example for people-to-people exchange between China and Northern Ireland in a post-virus era. It also facilitates the sound development of China-UK relations.

Chinese carrier Hainan Airlines is also arranging chartered flights for Chinese students to the UK, according to a statement on the carrier's website. A flight from Southwest China's Chongqing to Manchester, is expected to fly between September 21 and 27. 

Chinese students enrolled at 23 British universities are eligible to take the flights. They are enrolled at the University of Manchester, University of York, University of Bristol and University of Leeds, and others. 

UCAS, Britain's university admissions service, said more than 12,000 students from China are due to arrive this autumn, a 23 percent increase from last year.

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