Abu Dhabi: The United Arab Emirates (UAE) said it will bar entry of travellers from Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nepal and Sri Lanka from May 12 amid a sudden surge in COVID-19 infections in these countries.
“Flights between the four countries will continue to allow the transport of passengers from the UAE to Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nepal and Sri Lanka,” the UAE’s National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management Austroity said.
“This decision also includes extending the suspension of entry for travellers who were in these four countries in the 14-day period prior to arrival in the UAE,” it added.
The UAE citizens, diplomatic missions accredited by the four countries, official delegations, those travelling on business planes, and golden residence holders are exempted from the ban, Dawn reported. However, they will be subjected to precautionary measures that include a 10-day quarantine and PCR testing at the airport and on the fourth and eighth days after entering the country.
The country has also reduced the PCR testing period from 72 to 48 hours before travel.
Many South Asian countries are reeling under a new wave of COVID-19 infections.
In Pakistan, cases and deaths have also risen sharply, leading to fears about the strain on the health service.
Pakistan on Monday reported 3,447 new cases and 78 deaths, taking the country’s tally of infections to 861,473 and the death toll to 18,993.
Nepal is witnessing an explosion of COVID-19 cases.
Bangladesh too is witnessing coronavirus cases rising from early March, which forced the country’s authorities to impose a national lockdown.
Sri Lanka has also seen a sudden surge in case of numbers since mid-April, leading it to close schools in some areas, restrict religious gatherings.