With tens of thousands of its nationals stranded in the Middle East since Iraq occupied Kuwait, Bangladesh has begun sending food, water and medicine to refugees in Jordan, officials said Sunday.
They said the airlift was ordered by President Hussain Mohammed Ershad, who is due to leave for Turkey on Wednesday to meet Bangladeshi refugees stranded there.
A Foreign Office spokesman said that more than half the estimated 75,000 Bangladesh nationals in Kuwait have already left. The government's previous figure for Bangladeshis in Kuwait at the time of the invasion was 70,000.
A government spokesman said Sunday that nearly 10,000 Bangladeshis have been flown home from Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Turkey and that the rest of those marooned in the Middle East were expected to be evacuated by end of September.