Chinese emergency chartered flights are expected to fly back home almost all the more than 3,000 mainland tourists stuck in riot-hit Thailand by December 1.
A China Eastern Airbus-300 arrives at the Utapao Airport near Pattaya, about 150 km east of Bangkok, capital of Thailand, November 29, 2008. Chinese aviation authorities were sending 5 planes on Saturday to Thailand to bring home the remaining stranded Chinese tourists after the closure of the Suvarnabhumi International Airport in Bangkok.[Xinhua Photo]
Four Chinese mainland carriers have sent nine planes to retrieve the tourists after Bangkok's international airport closed because of a protest.
Some 2,000 tourists had returned back home by noon, and another more than 800 would fly back late Sunday night or early Monday morning, according to the airlines.
China Southern Airlines, the nation's largest carrier by fleet size, said late Sunday night it will sent another plane to take back the remaining tourists on Monday.
Around 246 passengers landed in Shanghai at 2:00 a.m. on Sunday. This was the first return flight from Thailand, though delayed for several hours because of unstable situation at the airport.
(Xinhua News Agency December 1, 2008)