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Pakistan temporarily bans UK flights amid detection of new Covid strain

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ISLAMABAD: The Government of Pakistan has declared on Monday a temporary suspension on all incoming flights from the United Kingdom for at least a week on the premise of new COVID strain detection in England which is ‘more transmissible than other previously known strains’, ARY News reported.

“Direct or indirect travel from the UK would be temporarily suspended, starting 11:59 PM on 22nd of December 2020,” the press release on the new development read.

According to the notification, all travelers who are in or have been in the UK over the past 10 days will not be allowed entry into Pakistan.

NCOC press statement declaring a temporary flight operations ban from UK while imposing conditions on Pakistanis returning and and those coming via a transit stay in the UK
NCOC press statement declaring a temporary flight operations ban from UK while imposing conditions on Pakistanis returning and and those coming via a transit stay in the UK

However, the press statement read that passengers in transit in the UK, who do not leave airside during the transit will be allowed entry in the country.

According to the press release, preliminary analysis of new COVID strain suggests that this particular mutation is approximately 70 per cent more transmissible. “However, so far, there is no evidence to suggest that the infection caused by this strain is any more severe.”

All the flights from 12 am onwards from UK will be barred from boarding in Pakistan due to a new, stronger strain of COVID-19 detected in England, the notification reads.

Travelers to depart for England on a Pakistani passport will be liable to some conditions for their return to home country, including a negative PCR test taken maximum 72 hours before boarding.

The transit travelers who did not originate their trip from England, to return to Pakistan, will have to observe week-long quarantine as well, the notification observed.

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