A NORTH Pembrokeshire artist is desperately appealing for help to get his son and friend back home from Peru.

Tim Fudge has launched an anxious plea to help return of his son, 19-year-old Oran, and his friend Tom Renny, currently trapped in the city of Cuzco by border closures and flight cancellations.

Tim is calling for emergency flights for Oran, from Maenchlochog, and Tom, from Moylgrove, along with other ex-pats trapped there.

“We hope to enlist your support to put pressure on the UK Government and Foreign Office to urgently organise repatriation flights to bring our highly vulnerable family members and fellow citizens home.

“We believe there is only a very narrow window of opportunity to get this done before the situation deteriorates too far. Our Government has currently devolved its responsibility and primary duty of care to its citizens to the commercial airlines who have largely ceased to function and have no power or ability whatsoever to organise this task.

“Our boys, along with a significant number of other British and Irish citizens are trapped in a variety of temporary accommodation, largely hostels, across the city of Cuzco, with no support networks to keep them supplied with food and water.

“The Peruvian Army is on the streets outside their accommodation with heavy weaponry. The city is in the Andes at an altitude of 11,150 feet and therefore some of those trapped are experiencing breathing difficulties and health problems, purely from remaining in the very thin air for far longer than was their medical advice to do so.

“It is our opinion that with half of our aircraft and their crews unemployed and parked up, and with thousands of flight slots now available, it must be within our government’s ability to organise repatriation flights for British and Irish citizens very soon. Many countries have done so already!

“Both Cuzco and the capital city Lima have good airports and several hundred British and Irish citizens desperate to get out before a potential breakdown in social order leaves them to fend for themselves with no support network whatsoever, and no access even to food and water.

“The most difficult part of any such endeavour would be negotiating the flights in and out of the country with the Peruvian Government, however the Peruvian president has already issued a statement saying he is very willing for this to take place.

“The only real obstacle to a successful outcome it seems is our own British Government claiming that it’s too complicated.

“Whilst it is understandable that the Foreign Office, Embassy and Consular staff are massively overstretched at present, it beggars belief that we have been placed on hold for hour after hour only then to be cut off from our own Embassy phone lines. The British embassy in the capital city Lima has closed for 14 days. There has been no meaningful government advice, only that it is the responsibility of airlines that no longer fly or exist to get our families home.”

Tim is asking people to share the boys’ plight in the desperate hope they can be brought home.

Preseli MP Stephen Crabb, said: “Since the start of the week my staff and I have been working hard to assist two young men from the county who are on a gap year in Peru and now find themselves caught up in the state of emergency declared there with no way to return home.

“We are speaking to Ministers and the Foreign Office every day to try to get clarity on the situation on the ground and to see if a plan can be put together to get them back home given the severe restrictions now in place in Peru.

“We are also dealing with numerous other cases of Pembrokeshire people stranded in other countries around the world where there are also now ‘lock down’ situations in place. I have remained in contact with the young men and their families.

“A recent Facebook post by the family, although well intentioned, is resulting in many friends and contacts filling my email inbox with the same message. This is creating additional processing work for my staff at the worst possible moment and is not helpful.

“We will continue to work on this case.”

Speaking to the Western Telegraph, Tom said: "We’re doing ok here, just very bored and frustrated! Getting more worried the longer we’re stuck here though!"