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North Korea introduces total ban on visitors from China amid surge in COVID-19 cases North Korea-China
File image of North Korea-China border by Chanilim714 on Panoramio via Wikimedia Commons

North Korea introduces total ban on visitors from China amid surge in COVID-19 cases

India Blooms News Service | @indiablooms | 05 Jan 2023, 11:42 pm

Pyongyang: North Korea has now introduced a total ban on visitors from its close ally and neighbor as China is witnessing a surge in COVID-19 cases.

“Chinese citizens are temporarily banned to enter,” reads an entry listed on China’s National Immigration Administration website as quoted by Daily Asian Age.

“All recent arrivals from the People’s Republic of China, including North Korean citizens, must undergo 30 days of quarantine and observation,” it added.

It is not clear when North Korea imposed the measure or how long it will remain in effect.

Several countries have announced new curbs on travelers from China since Beijing this week announced an end to mandatory quarantines for inbound travelers and allowing some Chinese to travel abroad, prompting a dramatic increase of interest in foreign travel by Chinese.

Meanwhile, China hopes that other countries will focus on the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic rather than its politicization, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning said on Wednesday.

"We sincerely hope that all parties will focus on the fight itself, avoid any words or actions that politicize the epidemic, strengthen unity and work together to defeat the epidemic as soon as possible," the spokeswoman told a briefing.

The diplomat added that from the very outbreak of COVID-19, China put people's lives and health first and effectively carried out prevention and control measures mindful of the country's socioeconomic development.

In December, China announced that it was abandoning its zero-tolerance policy for COVID-19 and preparing to reopen its borders on January 8.

The end of nearly three years of strict measures in a country of 1.4 billion people is feared to potentially lead to a massive spread of the disease across the globe.

Several countries, such as the United Kingdom, the United States, Japan, Italy and Spain, have introduced restrictions on the entry of travelers from China after its relaxed domestic controls.

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