The temporary ban effective from February 3 also applies to travellers who transited through any of the 20 countries in the 14 days before a planned visit to the Kingdom.
RIYADH — In the wake of rising cases of Coronavirus, Saudi Arabia on Tuesday banned expatriates from travelling to the Kingdom from 20 countries, with the exception of diplomats, medical practitioners and their families.
The temporary ban, effective from February 3, includes people arriving from the United Arab Emirates, Germany, the United States, Britain, Sweden, Brazil, Argentina, South Africa, France, Egypt, Lebanon, India and Pakistan, according to local media.
The ban also applies to travellers who transited through any of the 20 countries in the 14 days before a planned visit to the Kingdom, reports Arab News.
The complacency around coronavirus restrictions had led to a notable increase in daily cases in the kingdom, said Saudi Arabia’s health minister.
Saudi Arabia recorded 270 new infections on Saturday, 105 of them in the capital, Riyadh.
The kingdom has recorded more than 367,800 cases and 6,370 deaths so far, the highest tally in the region. It saw daily infections fall from a peak above 4,000 in June to dip below the 100 mark in early January.
“We have unfortunately in recent days registered a noticeable increase and continued rise in infections. One of the main reasons is gatherings and complacency with precautionary measures,” said Health Minister Tawfiq al-Rabiah.
“Lack of compliance will force us to take measures to protect society,” he said in televised remarks. “I ask you to help us preserve the gains we made in combating coronavirus … This is a very difficult stage.”
(With media inputs)