Japan to bar foreign visitors due to Omicron threat




  • In US
  • 2021-11-29 01:32:21Z
  • By Reuters
 

TOKYO (Reuters) -Japan said on Monday it would bar entry to foreigners to prevent the spread of the Omicron variant of coronavirus, joining Israel in the strictest border measures yet since the variant's discovery.

"In order to avoid a worst-case scenario and as an emergency precautionary measure, Japan will first of all ban the entry of foreigners into the country from midnight on Nov. 30," Prime Minister Fumio Kishida told reporters.

Japanese returnees from a number of specified nations would have to quarantine in designated facilities, he added.

The move marked a rapid escalation of restrictions since Friday when Japan said it would tighten border controls on people arriving from six African nations.

It comes just a few weeks after Kishida's administration eased quarantine measures on foreign business travellers to help boost the economy.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) warned that deciding the severity level of Omicron, identified first in South Africa, could take "days to several weeks" in the absence of information that its symptoms differed from those of other variants.

Japan has not detected any Omicron cases so far. One traveller from Namibia was found to be positive for the coronavirus, and further tests were being conducted to find out if it was from the new variant, Health Minister Shigeyuki Goto said in a separate press conference.

Nations around the world have enacted various border curbs since the WHO dubbed Omicron a "variant of concern." But until Kishida's announcement, Israel had been the only country to ban all foreigners.

(Reporting by Elaine Lies; Editing by Tom Hogue and Stephen Coates)

COMMENTS

More Related News

COVID Infection More Protective Than Vaccines Amid CA Delta Surge
COVID Infection More Protective Than Vaccines Amid CA Delta Surge

Those who were previously sick with COVID-19 had more protection from delta than the vaccinated, California health officials said.

'Completely full' ICUs as omicron wave stresses hospitals; FDA expands use of remdesivir. Latest COVID-19 updates

In Alabama, cases have soared and ICUs are full. Most of Vermont's hospitals face critical staffing levels, a study found. COVID-19 updates.

Striking new data shows vaccines have protected New Yorkers very well against Omicron so far
Striking new data shows vaccines have protected New Yorkers very well against Omicron so far

Data for the weeks ending January 1 and 8 showed that when infections spiked citywide, vaccinated New Yorkers were less likely to get COVID-19.

Biden, Japan
Biden, Japan's Kishida vow to 'push back' on China
  • World
  • 2022-01-21 17:54:16Z

US President Joe Biden and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida agreed to "push back" against China and condemned North Korea's spate of missile tests...

GSK, Vir ramping up U.S. output of COVID antibody drug
GSK, Vir ramping up U.S. output of COVID antibody drug
  • US
  • 2022-01-21 17:19:09Z

The U.S. government last week signed a deal with the drugmakers to buy 600,000 more doses of the therapy, sotrovimab, for an undisclosed sum. The GSK-Vir...

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Comments

Top News: US