Nepalis in Europe at high risk of infection
Coronavirus has taken a huge toll in Europe and Nepalis as well as Non-resident Nepalis too have been affected by it. If the current situation continues, there is a danger that NRNs too could be affected by the virus, said Non-Resident Nepalis Association European Coordinator Narayan Acharya.
Considering the possible crisis resulting from the COVID-19, the NRNA has decided to set up an emergency fund of 50,000 Euros in order to provide rescue and relief support to the Nepalis in Europe, Acharya said.
Nepalis in Italy, where the impact of the Coronavirus is the highest so far, have reported being safe to date, said NRNA Italy chair Dev Gurung. There are around 1,500 Nepalis living in Italy.
Meanwhile, in Spain, seven Nepalis are reported to have been infected by COVID-19, according to NRNA Spain Chair Dinesh Gurung. One of the infected has returned home after recovery while the rest are still in the hospital. Some 10,000 Nepalis are believed to be living in Spain.
The condition of Nepalis in France is normal, said NRNA France Chair Narendra Shahi. Nepali Ambassador to France, Dipak Adhikari told RSS that the Nepalis in France are safe so far and regular communication is being made with the government of France and also Portugal to provide support to Nepalis if needed. There are around 5,000 Nepalis living in France, according to the Embassy.
The Nepali Embassy in London, UK, has said that eight Nepalis have tested positive for Coronavirus so far. Of them two died, according to deputy chief of mission of the Embassy Sharad Raj Aran. Four have returned home after treatment while two more are in hospital. Though there is no official data, some 150,000 Nepalis are believed to be living in Britain.
In Portugal, three Nepalis have been infected by COVID-19, said honorary consul general of Nepal to Lisbon, Makar Bahadur Hamal. They are undergoing treatment while others are in self-quarantine. Around 25,000 Nepalis are said to be living in Portugal.
Likewise, one Nepali has tested positive in Belgium, according to Nepali Ambassador to Belgium Lok Bahadur Thapa. Nepalis living in Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg have been urged to remain alert and adopt measures to stay away from the virus. There are around 9,000 Nepalis living in Belgium, according to Ambassador Thapa.