Duque Wants Stricter Border Control For Travelers Arriving From Middle East
STRICTER BORDER CONTROL – Following the surge in COVID-19 cases in the Philippines, Health Chief Francisco Duque III wanted stricter measures for travelers from the Middle East.
Recently, the Philippines had confirmed its first cases of the new COVID-19 variant from India. During an interview with ABS-CBN, the health chief stated:
I will recommend that certainly, but I am in touch with our WHO (World Health Organization) country representative in the same manner that we have expanded our travel ban beyond India
The Middle East and the Philippines had long since gotten strong ties. Furthermore, a large percentage of domestic workers from the Philippines can be found in the Middle East.
Currently, the protocols for entry to the country remain the same. Those who have Philippine Visas and residents of the Philippines can have eased entries with proper health protocols.
Meanwhile, foreigners and tourists are still not allowed to enter except when there’s a valid reason approved by the Bureau of Immigrations. However, the list of foreigners allowed to enter the country has already broadened.
Those who have travel history to India in the last 14 days prior to entry to the Philippines remain barred. However, foreign nationals that hold valid immigrant and non-immigrant visas such as students, workers, and residents are now allowed to enter the country.
The two individuals who were found positive for the Indian Variant, B.1.617 were returning OFWs from Oman and the United Arab Emirates. But, the two cases have already recovered from the virus. For now, the country has imposed a travel ban for India, Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh.
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