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New COVID-19 Variant: Saudi Arabia suspends international flights

SAUDI ARABIA – The country has suspended all international passenger flights for one week, citing fears of the spread of a new strain of COVID-19, an official said on Monday.

Entry into the kingdom through land and seaports will also be suspended for one week, the official news agency, SPA quoted an Interior Ministry official as saying.

If conditions persist, the one-week ban can be extended for both kinds of arrivals, the official said.

The measures came as a precaution “until medical information about the nature of this virus becomes clear, and to protect the public health of citizens and expatriates and ensure their safety,” according to the report.

Foreign flights that are currently inside the kingdom’s airspace will be allowed to leave, the official said.

The government has ordered those who returned from one of the European countries or any country where the new strain has appeared to self-isolate for two weeks and be tested for COVID-19.

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