Saturday 26 November 2022 - 5:31:53 pm

UAE Embassy in Washington DC evacuates UAE citizens from Florida ahead of hurricane Ian


WASHINGTON D.C., 29th September, 2022 (WAM) -- The Embassy of the United Arab Emirates in Washington D.C., has evacuated UAE citizens in Florida to Washington D.C., after Tropical Storm Ian turned into a powerful hurricane threatening the State of Florida.

The evacuation was executed under the supervision of Yousef Al Otaiba, UAE Ambassador to the United States of America.

In the midst of Hurricane Ian, an emergency evacuation plan was developed by the Embassy’s Emergency and Crisis Committee, which included members from the Embassy, various technical offices, the Annexes, and scholarship agencies. 141 Emirati nationals have been evacuated thus far. The evacuation plan included various means of transportation to transfer UAE nationals out of Florida, including by chartering a private plane (for 119 evacuees), booking seats on commercial flights (for 13 evacuees), and having individuals drive out of Florida (9 evacuees), wherein they were safely evacuated to Washington, DC.

Due to critical weather conditions and the difficulty of finding commercial flights to Washington D.C., the Embassy's Emergency and Crisis Committee arranged the evacuation of some UAE nationals from Florida to safe neighboring states. As part of the evacuation plan, the Embassy also assigned a task force to look after the citizens and their escorts upon arrival at the hotel in Washington D.C., ensuring their needs were met and providing the necessary support during their stay.

In light of the situation, Shaima Gargash, Deputy Head of Mission in Washington D.C., stated, "Our embassy ensures that we are taking all the necessary precautions to safeguard the security and safety of UAE nationals in the United States."

Gargash added, "We perform our duties in close and direct coordination with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation."

The UAE Embassy expressed its acknowledgement of and appreciation for the effective role of the Embassy’s diplomats, employees, and Attachés. The Embassy also extended its utmost appreciation to the UAE Government for its unlimited support for its citizens around the world.

WAM/Amjad Saleh/MOHD AAMIR