Mexicans quarantined for flu flown home from China
MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Dozens of Mexicans stuck in forced quarantine in China to ward off the spread of a deadly swine flu virus arrived home in a government-chartered plane Wednesday.
Wearing surgical face masks as they descended the AeroMexico plane, the group were met by first lady Margarita Zavala and relatives waving Mexican flags.
They had been stuck when the Chinese government suspended flights to and from Mexico and isolated them as a protective measure against. The H1N1 flu virus has killed 42 people in Mexico and two in the United States and spread to more than 1,500 people worldwide.
Earlier on Wednesday, a Chinese flight arrived in Shanghai carrying 98 Chinese who had been stranded in Mexico after flights were suspended. All appeared healthy, according to Chinese media.
Beijing ordered dozens of Mexicans into seclusion across China at the start of May, although only one a man in Hong Kong has been found to be infected with the flu.
The Mexicans, including a honeymooning couple, were confined in hotels, mostly in Beijing and Shanghai, and denied translators even though none of them showed flu symptoms.
Mexico accused Beijing of discrimination and called the confinement measures "unacceptable" and "without foundation". China rejected the criticism.
The spat has strained an emerging relationship between Mexico and China, rival exporters of manufactured goods to the United States, but with Beijing courting Latin America as a trade and diplomatic partner, the damage is expected to be short-lived. (Reporting by Eduardo Quiros and Cyntia Barrera Diaz; editing by Mohammad Zargham)