Michiganders stranded as Peru enforces lockdown due to coronavirus
Now, those half-dozen Michiganders are among dozens of Americans scrambling to leave Peru after President Martín Vizcarra issued an emergency order last Sunday closing Peru’s borders and imposing a 15-day quarantine for slow the spread of the coronavirus.
It’s unclear how many Americans are still there, but at least 60 are listed in a community spreadsheet posted on social media by Americans trying to get home. They even have a Facebook page and a #stuckinperu hashtag.
The most frustrating thing, several residents told Bridge Magazine on Saturday, has been the lack of communication from the United States Embassy on the steps they can take to return home. Several also said they were upset by President Trump’s comments appearing to suggest travelers were too slow to take action to return home. “They were late with their flights. We gave them a period of time; they did not succeed ”, declared the president during a press conference.
It was “devastating,” Murray said, to see other countries like Israel, Mexico and Canada send planes to evacuate their citizens stranded while they were stuck in their Airbnb throughout the week watching developments on television.
Gachupin and Murray said they touched down at Lima airport last Sunday for the start of their honeymoon. They found themselves running to Jorge Chávez International Airport that night, after the president’s emergency order was announced, only to find they couldn’t get an international flight out of the country before the date. Monday limit.
When emergency measures were first announced, there were 71 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Peru; by Friday afternoon, the number had risen to 263.
Gachupin is a nurse anesthetist at the University of Michigan Hospital and Murray is an anesthetist at Beaumont Royal Oak. Both said they looked forward to returning home as soon as possible to help with the coronavirus medical response.
“At this point, it doesn’t feel like the (US) government people are going to come and get us,” Gachupin said on Saturday.
The couple said they contacted their congressman Brenda Lawrence and the office of U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow. Gachupin said despite repeated calls to the US embassy during the week, only one was recovered, and it was by a security guard who informed them that the embassy was closed. .
Robyn Bryan, spokesperson for Stabenow, said in a statement that the office was working with the State Department and other local offices to help a “significant number” of Michiganders stranded abroad. The U.S. Embassy in Lima could not be reached for comment.