Saudi Arabia urges against travel outside Kingdom amid COVID-19 concerns

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Saudi Arabia’s Public Health Authority (Weqaya) is urging citizens and residents to avoid “unnecessary” travel outside the country amid rising COVID-19 cases and the new omicron variant.

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“Weqaya has recommended avoiding unnecessary travel outside the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, especially to high-risk countries, given the significant increase in the number of COVID-19 cases, the emergence of the [omicron variant], and the accelerated rapid spread of the virus in many countries,” the official Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.

Travelers arriving from outside of the Kingdom, including vaccinated and unvaccinated citizens and residents, are urged to “avoid social contact” for at least five days.

Those who have any respiratory symptoms or have a fever should get a PCR test, the news agency added.

The authority also recommended that all incoming travelers adhere to preventative measures, including wearing a face mask, avoiding crowds and public places, as well as sanitizing their hands and avoiding handshakes.

Weqaya is also urging people to take two doses of the approved vaccines and to take a booster when allowed.

COVID-19 in Saudi Arabia

The Ministry of Health on Saturday announced that 116 new COVID-19 infections were confirmed in a 24-hour period. Meanwhile, 96 people who previously tested positive for the virus recovered.

The ministry added that the number of critical cases in the Kingdom has reached 34.

Saudi Arabia has so far detected 550,738 total infections since the start of the pandemic, while the total recoveries reached 539,981 as of Saturday.

One new fatality was also reported on Saturday, bringing the death toll to 8,861.

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