First batch of Nigerians from Sudan arrive home


The first group of 376 Nigerians fleeing the crisis in Sudan arrived in Abuja on Wednesday, after being stranded for days at the Egyptian border following visa issues.

The evacuees were airlifted in two planes – the Nigerian commercial carrier Air Peace and a military aircraft – from Aswan in neighbouring Egypt.

The visibly happy returnees were received by the foreign ministry and emergency services.

Sadiya Farouk, the minister of humanitarian affairs and disaster management, said each returnee would be given $200 (£196) to enable them to settle home.

Nigeria had deployed 40 luxury buses to take the evacuees to Egypt for airlifting to the West African country.

Some 20 buses prepared to evacuate hundreds more Nigerians are reportedly blocked in Sudan. More than 5,000 Nigerians are believed to reside in Sudan, many of them students.

The fighting in Sudan has killed at least 550 people, displaced tens of thousands and triggered an exodus of foreigners and international staff.