East Asian Travelers Banned from Israel over Coronavirus Fears

A Ukrainian tourist walks in the arrival hall of the Internatioanal Boryspil airport outside Kiev after his plane landed from China on January 30, 2020. - The first out of four special flights will be held on January 30, 2020 in order to evacuate hundreds of Ukrainian tourists from China …

The Times of Israel reports:  As part of efforts to prevent the spread of the deadly coronavirus, Interior Minister Aryeh Deri on Monday said Israel would ban all non-Israelis who were in four East Asian countries and territories in the previous 14 days.

Until now, travelers coming from Thailand, Singapore, and the semi-autonomous Chinese cities of Hong Kong and Macau had to quarantine themselves for 14 days, under Health Ministry directives issued on Sunday. The new restrictions by Deri were advised by the Health Ministry, Hebrew media reported.

As a result, Hong Kong’s national airline Cathay Pacific is set to announce that it is suspending all its flights to Israel, multiple reports said, quoting officials in the company as saying its employees will not be able to enter the Jewish state under the new rules. The Foreign Ministry is reportedly concerned about diplomatic fallout from the ban.

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