In the wake of the growing Coronavirus (Covid-19) scare, the UAE has decided to temporarily suspend the issuance of entry visas. The decision will come into effect by March 17. This decision, however, will not affect the holders of diplomatic passports. Also, the individuals who have got the visas before the effective date will also not be affected by the decision to enter the country.
The Federal Authority For Identity and Citizenship, in a statement issued on Saturday, March 14, said that the decision was taken as a precautionary measure that is initiated by the country as a means to prevent the spread of coronavirus. As the World Health Organisation has declared the novel coronavirus outbreak as a pandemic, the UAE has realised that travelling during these times is dangerous, which has prompted them to make such a decision.
The Federal Authority For Identity and Citizenship has affirmed that the decision originates from the UAE’s spirit of responsibility to stand and fight against the deadly virus and stands shoulder to shoulder with the other countries of the world. The authority also added that the decision will be effective until the countries activate effective mechanisms for medical screening of the passengers.
Following the decision, many popular airlines from UAE’s largest travel market – India, have started cancelling their flights to the UAE. Airlines like Air India, IndiGo and Vistara have cancelled their flights from March 17 until the travel restrictions are lifted.