Coronavirus: Somalia temporarily lifts international flights ban for two days


Aden Abdulle Airport

The government of Somalia on Saturday announced it had temporarily lifted a ban on international flights for two days to allow citizens who have been stranded across the world to return home due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Somalia’s Ministry of Transport said airlines will be allowed to fly into the country to facilitate the return of Somalis stranded at international airports, especially in Kenya (which has also banned international flights to listed countries), the United Arab Emirates and Ethiopia.

Also, all passengers originating from China, Iran, South Korea, and Italy or transiting through one of those countries for the last 14 days are not be allowed to enter the country.

Somalia had on Tuesday banned international flights as among measures to curb the spread of the deadly coronavirus. Other measures included shutting down all learning institutions and banning large social gatherings for two weeks.

Earlier on Monday, the Federal Government of Somalia banned miraa imports from Kenya and Ethiopia for 15 days after it confirmed its first case of Covid-19.

Although the country has so far confirmed one case in the country, some 10 people have been quarantined after arriving from countries that have been ravaged by the deadly virus.

The ministry said the government has embarked on tracing people who travelled with the patient on the same flight.

Somali Health Minister Fawziya Abikar called for help from donors to help the government’s contingency plan for Covid-19.

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