MEXICO CITY, May 5 (Xinhua) -- A total of 79 Chinese citizens left Mexico City early Tuesday aboard a chartered flight sent by the Chinese government.
The plane took off from international airport Benito Juarez at about 3:05 a.m. local time (0805 GMT), heading towards Tijuana, northern city on the U.S.-Mexico border, to lift 20 more Chinese before returning to China.
China sent the chartered flight after an agreement with Mexico, the epicenter of the A/H1N1 flu outbreak, to send chartered flights to each other's countries to bring back their stranded nationals.
The aircraft Boeing 777-200 is expected to return to Shanghai at 10 a.m. Wednesday local time (0200 GMT), its operator Guangzhou-based China Southern Airlines said.
The 17-strong crew have been trained on precautions against the flu and dealing with any health emergencies, the airline told Xinhua.
A quarantine expert from the Ministry of Health and doctors from the airline would closely monitor the health conditions of the passengers.
If any passengers developed symptoms like fever, all the passengers and flight crew would probably be quarantined after returning to China, the airline said.
China suspended direct flights from Mexico to Shanghai since Saturday after a 25-year-old Mexican man, who arrived in Shanghai Thursday aboard flight Aeromexico 098, was later diagnosed with A/H1N1 flu in Hong Kong.
The Mexican became Hong Kong's first confirmed A/H1N1 infection case on Friday.