Pakistan on Monday placed travel restrictions on UK passengers after the global ban due to Coronavirus. The decision came in after the emergence of a new mutated strain of COVID-19 that was spreading rapidly in England. With the heightening global panic and causing travel chaos, Pakistan joined a slew of countries that have closed their borders to Britain.
A meeting of the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) placed a temporary restriction. On inbound direct or indirect travelers from the UK to Pakistan that will come into effect at midnight of December 22. More so, it is to last until midnight of Dec 29, according to a communique sent to the Civil Aviation Authority by the Aviation Division.
The country on Sunday reported a daily increase of more than 13,000 cases. A new record emerged, despite tough lockdown measures that applied on 14 December. As Sunday wore on, the key European nations imposed major new restrictions.
As Pakistan places the restriction that will apply to all persons who start their travel from the UK. Also, to those who are in or have been in the UK over the past 10 days, said the letter.
Transit passengers who do not leave the airside in the UK from destinations other than the UK will be allowed entry into Pakistan. Meanwhile, Pakistani passport holders who have traveled to the UK on visitor or temporary visas will be allowed to return to the country with the following arrangements.
In addition to this, the NCOC also decided to make the ‘Pass Track’ app mandatory. For all travelers arriving in Pakistan with effect from midnight Dec 22. Passengers without the app will need to fill out the web form of the Pass Track app.
A number of countries have taken the same action
An expanding list of European Union nations and Canada barred travel from the UK on Sunday. Others were considering similar action in a bid to block the new strain of the coronavirus sweeping across UK from spreading to their countries.
France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium, Austria, Ireland, and Bulgaria all announced restrictions on UK travel, hours after British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that Christmas shopping and gatherings in southern England must be cancelled because of rapidly spreading infections blamed on the new coronavirus variant.
The NCOC spokesperson said many countries, including Saudi Arabia and Oman, had either completely banned or imposed additional restrictions on flights and travellers coming from the UK.
Following Saudi Arabia’s decision, Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) canceled its 44 flights to and from the kingdom on Monday. Moreover, the PIA spokesperson said the airline would not operate its flights during the ban. However, all affected passengers would be accommodated as soon as the flights recommence.
Previously, Pakistan had stalled all flights and halted all travel from in and out of the country, amidst the COVID-19 scare. After resuming, all international travelers coming to Pakistan had to get tested for Coronavirus as a necessity and mandatorily.
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