A WORKER stuck thousands of miles from his family has urged the Government to help bring people back to their loved ones.

Anton Angione has lived in Colchester for the last 20 years but is currently stranded in Saudi Arabia.

The 40-year-old, specialises in blockchain technology and artificial intelligence has been in the country for four weeks with the firm he works for, Tori Global, is working on a project with the Saudi Government which aims to leave a positive legacy.

But all international flights into the Gulf state have been blocked, and Mr Angione, along with other stranded residents, are yet to receive any indication from the Government as to when they might be able to return home.

Mr Angione realised he was not the only person from the town stuck in Saudi Arabia after reading The Gazette’s article with Tony Evans from Wivenhoe earlier this week.

“When I read it, I thought: ‘Wow, I am not the only one’," he said.

“I have tried to call British Airways and have not been successful and the British Embassy are not returning my calls.

“I have had to move between four different hotels because each time there is any potential sign of coronavirus, they are evacuated.

“Everything is shut but I am incredibly surprised by the support I have received from the Saudi people who I do not even know.

“Lots of people have treated me like I am family.

“When they realise you are doing things with a pure heart, they take you in.”

Mr Angione is originally from southern Italy but moved to the UK to learn English and now considers Colchester to be his home.

Foreign secretary Dominic Raab has said it is an “over-riding priority” to get stranded citizens home and Mr Angione is calling for more rescue flights.

“I understand the Government, and Dominic Raab have to prioritise but the British Government should do what other countries are doing.

“I am a British citizen who arrived here on a British passport.

“I just want to be home with my son.”

Mr Angione, who also sit on the all parliamentary group of artificial intelligence and blockchain in the House of Lords, said he believed cyber experts like himself and others were key to tracking and preventing the spread of coronavirus.

His expertise is such he had addressed world leaders on the technology and what it can bring to society.

“Every hour is crucial,” he said.

“We have some of the best brains in the world in Great Britain – some amazing cyber punks to help and support with this."