Since 1975
  • facebook
  • twitter
  • instagram
  • Home
  • Saudi Arabia advises citizens, residents to avoid traveling to Italy, Japan

Saudi Arabia advises citizens, residents to avoid traveling to Italy, Japan

25 Feb 2020
Saudi Arabia is advising its citizens to avoid traveling to Italy and Japan due to the outbreak of the new coronavirus. (Shutterstock)
Saudi Arabia is advising its citizens to avoid traveling to Italy and Japan due to the outbreak of the new coronavirus. (Shutterstock)
A picture taken on Feb. 24, 2020, shows a view of a hotel in the Kuwaiti capital where Kuwaitis returning from Iran are quarantined and tested for coronavirus COVID-19. (AFP)
A picture taken on Feb. 24, 2020, shows a view of a hotel in the Kuwaiti capital where Kuwaitis returning from Iran are quarantined and tested for coronavirus COVID-19. (AFP)
A picture taken on Feb. 24, 2020, shows a view of a hotel in the Kuwaiti capital where Kuwaitis returning from Iran are quarantined and tested for coronavirus COVID-19. (AFP)
A picture taken on Feb. 24, 2020, shows a view of a hotel in the Kuwaiti capital where Kuwaitis returning from Iran are quarantined and tested for coronavirus COVID-19. (AFP)
Short Url:
Updated 26 Feb 2020
25 Feb 2020

DUBAI: Saudi Arabia is advising its citizens to avoid traveling to Italy and Japan due to the outbreak of the new coronavirus, state-owned Al Arabiya TV reported on Tuesday.

Dubai International Airport, the world’s busiest for international travel, also announced Tuesday that the United Arab Emirates is limiting flights to Iran over the outbreak of the new coronavirus, just a day after it spread across multiple Mideast nations from the Islamic Republic.

The airport’s announcement came after Bahrain said it would suspend all flights from Dubai and Sharjah for 48 hours over the virus as an infected passenger transited Dubai to the island nation.

The airport said in a statement to The Associated Press that “all flights to and from the Islamic Republic of Iran, with the exception of Tehran, have been suspended until further notice.”

It added that “all passengers arriving on direct flights from Tehran will receive thermal screening at the airport.”

Dubai has been screening passengers on incoming flights from China, where the outbreak began. Long-haul carriers Emirates and Etihad are among the few international airlines.

UAE authorities also called on citizens to avoid travel to Thailand ‘until further notice’ as a precaution against the virus outbreak. Iraqi health officials on Tuesday banned the entry of travelers coming from Thailand, South Korea, Japan, Italy and Singapore.

Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman and Iraq reported their first cases of the China coronavirus on Monday as Gulf countries moved to stop an outbreak in Iran from spreading.

The infections spurred some GCC members to halt travel links with Iran and warn citizens not to travel to the country where authorities have been accused of covering up the scale of the outbreak.

Kuwait on Tuesday said diagnosed cases have risen to eight, including two female passengers arriving from the Iranian city of Mashhad, a 53-year-old Kuwaiti man, a 61-year-old Saudi citizen, and a 21-year-old stateless Arab.

The country also banned flights to and from Iraq, Italy, South Korea, and Thailand, according to Kuwait’s state news agency, KUNA.

Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Health said it was coordinating with Kuwaiti health authorities to treat the Saudi national, adding that the patient would remain in Kuwait until they were cured.

Saudi Arabia’s embassy in Kuwait said the condition of the Saudi citizen is stable and he is in no danger.

The statement also called on citizens to follow the instructions issued by the Kuwaiti health ministry and contact the embassy in the event of an emergency.

Kuwaiti special forces wearing protective masks are seen at the entrance to a hotel where people evacuated from Iran are being held in quarantine, in Fahaheel, Kuwait Feb. 24,2020. (Reuters)

Bahrain said two people had the virus diagnosed after arriving from Iran and travelling through Dubai.

The first patient “was transferred to the Ebrahim Khalil Kanoo Medical Centre for immediate testing, treatment and isolation under the supervision of a specialized medical team,” Bahrain News Agency said. The school bus driver, had worked on Sunday, dropping off children at schools, that were later closed down.

The second patient, a Bahraini woman was examined as she arrived at Bahrain International Airport having traveled through Dubai. Her husband and her sister-in-law, who were traveling with her, tested negative for the virus but were also placed in quarantine.

Bahrain also suspended flights to and from Dubai International Airport and Sharjah International Airport for 48 hours, Bahrain News Agency said early Tuesday.

Oman’s health ministry said its first two cases are Omani women who had visited Iran. Oman TV said the women were in a stable condition, it added.

Oman suspended flights to and from Iran, the Public Authority of Civil Aviation (PACA) said.

At least 250 people arriving from countries affected by coronavirus were quarantined on suspicion of infection, Oman’s Minister of Health Dr. Ahmed bin Mohammed Al-Saidi said.

Iraq, which on Monday also reported its first case of the virus, has shut its Safwan border crossing with Kuwait to travelers and trade at Kuwait’s request, the local mayor said on Monday.

The outbreak in Iran forced the government there to dismiss one lawmaker’s claim the toll could be as high as 50.

The cases have prompted travel bans from nearby countries trying to stem the spread of the coronavirus.

Last week, Kuwait banned entry of all ships from the Islamic republic and suspended flights to and from the country.

Kuwait also banned non-citizens coming from Iran from entering the Gulf state and operated chartered flights to bring back hundreds of Kuwaiti Shiite pilgrims.

Around a third of Kuwait’s 1.4 million citizens are Shiites, who travel regularly to Iran to visit religious shrines. Kuwait also hosts roughly 50,000 Iranian workers.

Over half of Bahrain’s population are Shiites, who also travel frequently to Iran.

The UAE has already announced 13 cases of the coronavirus, all of them foreigners. The latest were a 70-year-old Iranian man, whose condition is unstable, and his 64-year-old wife.

UAE airlines have suspended most flights to China – where the virus first emerged in December – except to the capital Beijing. Around half a million Iranians live and work in the UAE.

Saudi Arabia remains free of the virus, but has suspended flights to China.

Qatar Airways said on Monday that people arriving from Iran and South Korea would be asked to stay in home isolation or a quarantine facility for 14 days.

Agencies

return to top