The Tunisian Football Federation (FTF) has asked the country ministry of foreign affairs to charter a plane and repatriate Tunisian coaches and players stranded in Saudi Arabia amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The federation stated in a statement published on Monday evening that it has been monitoring the situation in the Gulf region and has requested the government to allow a single flight between Jeddah Airport and Tunis Carthage Airport to allow the return of its nationals from Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabia has recorded 562 cases of Covid-19 while Tunisia has 89 cases with three deaths so far.
The FTF president Wadii Al Jabri noted that several players and coaches are stranded with their families and have requested for assistance from the federation to leave Saudi Arabia.
The outbreak has led to dozens of countries suspending their leagues and tournaments. CAF suspended CHAN 2020 that was scheduled to take place from April 4 to 25. The African football body had earlier cancelled the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers that were set for the last week of March.
Dozens of African nations have now suspended domestic football and international games, including Egypt, DR Congo, Ivory Coast, Morocco, Tanzania, Kenya, Gabon, Sudan, Botswana, Ghana, Algeria, Tunisia, South Africa, Ethiopia, Guinea and Sudan.
The coronavirus COVID-19 is affecting 195 countries and territories around the world and an international conveyance (the Diamond Princess cruise ship harboured in Yokohama, Japan). It has infected at least 380,000 people and killed at least 16,500.