Saudi Arabia has allowed travellers from 11 countries by lifting the travel ban that was imposed to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus infection.
According to the report, the Middle Eastern country has lifted the ban for travellers from the United Arab Emirates, Germany, the United States, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, the United Kingdom, Sweden, Switzerland, France and Japan, reported Reuters citing the Saudi state news agency
The passengers from these countries will be allowed entry from May 30, said the report. However, they will still require quarantine procedures, it said.
Earlier in the month, the nation had eased the travel ban by allowing vaccinated citizens to leave the kingdom for the first time in more than a year.
Before this announcement, for the past 14 months, Saudi citizens had mostly been banned from travelling abroad out of concerns that international travel could fuel the outbreak of the virus within the country of more than 30 million people. The ban, in place since March 2020, has impacted Saudi students who were studying abroad, among others.
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In recent months, however, the kingdom has vaccinated close to 11.5 million residents with at least one jab of the COVID-19 vaccine, making them eligible to depart the country on May 17 under the new guidelines. Authorities have also allowed people who have recently recovered from the virus and minors under 18 years of age with travel insurance to travel abroad.
Travellers returning from abroad will be required to quarantine at home and be tested for the virus infection.
The kingdom, which has covered coronavirus-related hospitalisations for citizens and residents, imposed some of the most sweeping measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus early on in the pandemic.
A recent list of countries for which direct or indirect travel remains restricted, however, includes a number of high-risk nations, including Lebanon, Yemen, Iran, Turkey and India.
In a separate development, Saudi Arabia announced on May 29 that it is shipping to India more medical oxygen and tankers for ferrying them as it increases aid for the nation fighting the world's worst outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic.
In April, Saudi Arabia shipped 80 tonnes of liquid oxygen to India and now three more containers with 60 tonnes of oxygen and another 100 containers to ferry them.
(With inputs from agencies)Follow our full coverage on COVID-19 here.