Saudi Arabia to announce lifting of COVID-19 travel ban details ‘later’: MOI source

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Saudi Arabia will announce the lifting of coronavirus-related travel restrictions for citizens “later,” a source at the Ministry of Interior announced in a statement on Wednesday.

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“Later to be announced: 1. Lifting restrictions on citizens leaving and returning to the Kingdom. 2. Permitting the opening of the borders for all transportation via land, sea and air,” the ministry said in a Twitter statement.

The latest announcement was in reference to an older statement issued in September stating that restrictions will be lifted on January 1, 2021 and that more clarification would be provided 30 days prior to that date, the official Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.

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The Kingdom partially eased travel restrictions in September, allowing GCC citizens and non-Saudis to enter the country with a valid work, residency or visit visa.

Three categories were later exempted from the restrictions and were allowed to apply for travel permits abroad. This included officials on missions and Saudi Arabian citizens with humanitarian cases wishing to reunite with family members living abroad. Nationals and their dependents living abroad were also exempt.

Authorities originally banned all travel to and from Saudi Arabia in March to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

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