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San Antonio couple stranded after Peru closes borders amid coronavirus outbreak

US embassy in Lima working with Peruvian government to arrange flights for U.S. citizens to return

SAN ANTONIO – As countries across the world respond to the coronavirus pandemic with shutdowns and by limiting travel, thousands of Americans are stuck abroad, including a San Antonio couple in Peru.

“I just asked her if she wanted to come to Peru since Peru didn’t have any coronavirus cases,” said Jose Angel Hinojosa, a San Antonio resident visiting abroad with his fiancee.

Hinojosa and Siul Cortes traveled to Machu Pichu, one of the seven wonders of the world, and that’s when Hinojosa popped the big question. Siul said yes, but the story doesn’t end there.

The couple is now stranded in Peru.

“I didn’t think it was going to happen since the virus was on the other side of the world,” Hinojosa said.

Peru has 416 COVID-19 cases, according to The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. On March 15, the country’s president issued a 15-day nationwide state of emergency and closed the borders.

The U.S. embassy in Lima, Peru, said it continues to look for options for U.S. citizens.

Tuesday’s flights from Peru to the U.S. were canceled. Peru’s state department advises people in this situation to check with their airline because, while the country is on lockdown, some flights are being let in and out on a case-by-case basis.

The embassy said U.S. citizens should stay in their lodging until further notice.

To learn more from the embassy, click here.

COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the new virus, stands for coronavirus disease 2019. The disease first appeared in late 2019 in Wuhan, China, but spread around the world in early 2020, causing the World Health Organization to declare a pandemic in March.

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