Thailand bans entry from eight African countries from December

Foreign tourists arrive at Suvarnabhumi Airport during the first day of the country's reopening campaign, part of the government's plan to jump start the pandemic-hit tourism sector in Bangkok, Thailand November 1, 2021. - Reuters

BANGKOK, Nov 28 (Bloomberg): Thailand will ban arrivals from eight southern African nations from Dec. 1 after Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-Ocha ordered agencies to step up vigilance against the new omicron variant.

Arrivals from Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe are forbidden from next month, Opas Karnkawinpong, director general of the Disease Control Department, said during a webcast briefing Saturday afternoon.

Any travelers from those countries who had already received approval will be subject to 14 days of quarantine.

Thailand has yet to detect any infection among arrivals from South Africa, Opas said.

"If there’s any urgent need for the government to adjust control measures against this new variant, I will order agencies to act immediately,” Prayuth said in a Facebook post Saturday morning.

"We will closely monitor how this new strain will impact Thailand.”

Ministry of Public Health reported on Saturday (Nov 27) that in the past 24 hours there are 6,073 new patients who tested positive for Covid-19, 169 of whom have been found in prisons.

Death toll increased by 32, while 6,538 patients were cured and allowed to leave hospitals.

The country’s total caseload from Covid-19 stands at 2,100,959 – 2,000,502 of whom have recovered, 79,780 are still in hospitals and 20,677 have died.

Separately, another 319,123 people were given their first Covid-19 shot in the last 24 hours, 534,728 their second shot and 69,136 a booster, bringing the total number of Covid-19 vaccine doses administered nationwide to 91,658,056. - Bloomberg

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