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First group of tourists stranded in China's Sanya return home

Stranded tourists prepare to board their flight at Sanya Phoenix International Airport in Sanya, south China's Hainan Province, Aug. 9, 2022. (Xinhua/Guo Cheng)

SANYA, Aug. 10 (Xinhua) -- A plane carrying 125 tourists took off at 4:28 p.m. Tuesday from Sanya, a coastal resort city in south China's Hainan Province, bound for Xi'an in northwest China.

The tourists were stranded as a result of new COVID-19 clusters, and they were among the first group to return home.

Authorities in Sanya are moving fast to cater to the needs of 80,000-plus stranded tourists.

The Hainan COVID-19 prevention and control headquarters on Tuesday issued a notice elaborating on the requirements for the return of tourists stranded in the province. According to the notice, local authorities in Sanya will transfer tourists safely and in an orderly manner in different groups to avoid further transmission, following the evaluation of the infections and transmission risks of the tourists.

From Aug. 1 to noon on Aug. 9, Hainan logged 1,899 new infections of COVID-19.

Stranded tourists check in at Sanya Phoenix International Airport in Sanya, south China's Hainan Province, Aug. 9, 2022. (Xinhua/Guo Cheng)

A stranded tourist arrives at Sanya Phoenix International Airport in Sanya, south China's Hainan Province, Aug. 9, 2022. (Xinhua/Guo Cheng)

A staff member checks a tourist's health code at Sanya Phoenix International Airport in Sanya, south China's Hainan Province, Aug. 9, 2022. (Xinhua/Guo Cheng)

Stranded tourists check in at Sanya Phoenix International Airport in Sanya, south China's Hainan Province, Aug. 9, 2022. (Xinhua/Guo Cheng)

Zhang Wei (1st R), a tourist-turned volunteer from Jincheng in north China's Shanxi Province, registers nucleic acid test information at a hotel in Sanya, south China's Hainan Province, Aug. 9, 2022. Amid the latest resurgence of COVID-19 in Sanya, some tourists have joined local volunteers in combating the epidemic. (Xinhua/Guo Cheng)

Kang Yao (L), a tourist-turned volunteer from Changsha in central China's Hunan Province, registers nucleic acid test information at a hotel in Sanya, south China's Hainan Province, Aug. 9, 2022. (Xinhua/Guo Cheng)

Chen Yi (R), a tourist-turned volunteer from Wenzhou in east China's Zhejiang Province, helps to carry medical supplies at a storehouse in Sanya, south China's Hainan Province, Aug. 9, 2022. (Xinhua/Guo Cheng)■