Many Singaporeans and Malaysians have been left stranded at three airports in Turkey following an attempted military coup.
A team of 21 players from Singapore's youth football academy, F17, are stranded in Turkey's Antalya Airport. The group, including 13 children, was going to play the Gothia Cup, a well-known youth tournament in Sweden. They were on their way to Istanbul for a transit flight to Copenhagen, but the flight was diverted to the southern city of Antalya after the attempted coup.
The academy director of F17, Nabil Yusoff told TODAY Online: "We've contacted Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA), Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), the Singapore embassy in Ankara and Changi Airport to alert them of our situation. We are desperately trying to reach Turkish Airlines but to no avail. We plead for assistance from anyone who can help get our kids out of Turkey as soon as possible."
The MFA has advised the Singaporeans in Turkey to "stay indoors, monitor the news closely and e-register with MFA".
Meanwhile, Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister Zahid Hamidi also said that 127 Malaysians are facing the same problem at both Ataturk International Airport in Istanbul and Esenboğa International Airport in Ankara.
A spokesman of the Malaysian Embassy in Ankara said that they have advised the passengers to constantly monitor their surroundings and comply with instructions issued by the authorities.
"Malaysians stranded in the airport must always put their safety first and not do anything dangerous in the current tense situation," he told Bernama.
The official requested the Malaysians in Turkey to contact the embassy at phone line +(90)312-4463547 or +(90)312-4463548 if they require any sort of assistance.
Other poeple can contact the Foreign Ministry in Putrajaya through phone line 03-88874570 (after office hours) or 03-80008000.
Malaysians who plan to visit Turkey have been advised to cancel or postpone their trips.