A north London mother whose nine-month-old baby is recovering from pneumonia is appealing for help after they became stranded in Peru because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Caia Daly, 37, flew out to Lima with her husband Carlos Abisrror, who is originally from Peru, and two young children in February for a four-week holiday and to see family.
@airfrance can’t get through by phone, website isn’t working, trying to change my cancelled flight home to London but it’s impossible. My baby is recovering from bacterial pneumonia, we need to get home ASAP. #stuckinPeru@BBCWorld@BBCNews@UKinPerupic.twitter.com/I8X8crAZRT
— Caia Daly (@CaiaDaly) March 20, 2020
But their Air France flight home, which was scheduled for Friday night, has been cancelled after the country closed its borders and now they do not know how or when they will get back to the UK.
To make matters worse, Ms Daly spent three days in hospital this week after her baby picked up a virus which led to pneumonia.
Ms Daly, who is originally from Dublin, told the PA news agency: “If things get really bad here I’m worried for my children’s health, particularly with the baby recovering from pneumonia.
“It’s a lung thing, the coronavirus does cause pneumonia and because the healthcare system here isn’t amazing it’s a concern. I’d prefer to be at home.”
Ms Daly had been hoping to get her family on another Air France flight back to Paris scheduled for Sunday but the British Embassy in Lima said on Friday evening that flight was now full.
She tried to call Air France herself but said nobody answered the phone, while the relevant link on the airline’s website only directs back to the homepage.
“It’s frustrating,” Ms Daly said. “We really don’t know what to do and we don’t know how we’re going to get out.”
Peru is currently on lockdown, with a curfew running between 8pm and 5am and all shops closed except for pharmacies and those selling food, meaning Mr Abisrror needed a special permit to visit his wife and child in hospital.
Ms Daly has been able to extend their stay at their Airbnb accommodation because the visitors booked to arrive after them had been forced to cancel.
Now she is appealing to the UK Embassy in Lima and the Irish Embassy in Santiago for help, as well as contacting her MP, Catherine West.
Ms West said: “Its vital that the Foreign Office do all that they can to bring home stranded British nationals, and Caia’s case seems one of the most urgent.
“I’ll be raising this with the Foreign Secretary as soon as possible.”
Meanwhile, the family is hoping Air France will lay on more flights, or that the Government will intervene.
“We’re just really looking for a way to get out,” Ms Daly added.
Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab earlier admitted it is “very difficult” for people to get out of some destinations and warned there are up to nearly one million British nationals currently travelling abroad.