Coronavirus: UAE suspends entry of GCC citizens until approval of pre-testing system

Travelers wear masks as they arrive at the Dubai International Airport, after the UAE's Ministry of Health and Community Prevention confirmed the country's first case of coronavirus, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates January 29, 2020. (File photo: Reuters)

The United Arab Emirates suspended the entry of GCC nationals into the country starting from Midnight Saturday until the approval of the pre-examination mechanism for the coronavirus, the foreign ministry said on Friday according to state news agency WAM.

Earlier on Friday, the UAE said it will allow GCC nationals to enter the country starting Saturday, but they will be required to undergo screenings and health checks and then must self-quarantine for 14-days.

On Wednesday, the UAE banned its citizens from traveling abroad and had previously called for UAE nationals traveling abroad to return home. It also ordered a 14-day quarantine for anyone returning to the country.

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the UAE stood at 140 as of Thursday.

In addition to the travel restrictions, the government had put in place several measures to combat the spread of the coronavirus including closing tourist attractions, theme parks, gyms, bars, pubs, cinemas, banning all establishments from hosting wedding parties, as well as urging the public to avoid gatherings where there are more than 50 people.

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Last Update: 11:06 KSA 14:06 - GMT 11:06
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