Japan to ban entry from United States, China, South Korea, most of Europe
TOKYO, Kyodo - Japan is planning to place an entry ban on foreigners who have recently been to the United States, China, South Korea and most of Europe in an effort to contain the spread of the new coronavirus, government sources said Monday.
The measure would apply to foreign nationals who have been to any of the listed regions within 14 days of arriving in Japan.
All Japanese returnees and foreigners who have traveled outside the banned areas will be asked to self-quarantine for 14 days and watch for symptoms of COVID-19, according to the sources.
The Japanese Foreign Ministry, meanwhile, is set to raise its travel advisory for the United States, China, South Korea and most of Europe, including Britain, to Level 3, warning Japanese citizens to "avoid all travel" to those countries, according to the sources.
Some areas of China and South Korea such as Hubei Province and Daegu as well as more than 20 European countries had already been subject to an entry ban imposed by Japan.
Coronavirus cases have surged in the United States, which has overtaken Italy and China to become the country worst-hit by the pandemic that has killed more than 33,000 globally, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University of the United States.
Other parts of Europe such as Spain and Germany have also been heavily impacted.
Japan had seen comparatively few cases but has recently experienced a spike in positive test results in Tokyo, leading to a rush to prevent new infections from being imported.
As of Sunday, the number of infections in Japan stood at 2,603 including about 700 from the Diamond Princess cruise ship that was quarantined for two weeks near Tokyo, with 66 deaths. (Kyodo)