Saudi Arabia to impose 3-year travel ban for citizens traveling to red-listed countries

Riyadh: The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will impose a three-year travel ban on citizens who travel to the countries which have been red-listed by the Kingdom due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported on Tuesday.

In a statement carried by the SPA, an official source at the ministry of interior said that traveling to the prohibited countries is an explicit violation of the announced instructions.

“The violator will expose himself to legal accountability and severe penalties upon his return, and will prevent him from traveling outside the Kingdom for a period of three years,” SPA reported.

On July 17, the Kingdom has banned the direct entry of expatriates from thirteen countries which are India, Pakistan, Indonesia, Egypt, Turkey, Argentina, Brazil, South Africa, Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Vietnam, United Arab Emirates, and Lebanon.

The ministry of interior called on citizens not to travel directly or indirectly to countries where the COVID-19 pandemic has not been controlled and where there are cases of mutant strains.

It also urged citizens to be careful and to stay away from areas where instability prevails or where the virus is spreading, and to take all precautionary measures regardless of their destination.

On July 26, the Saudi ministry of health announced that over half of the Kingdom’s population has become immune by at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

The Kingdom on Tuesday recorded 1,379 new COVID-19 infections, bringing its total to 520,774 cases and 8,189 deaths.