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Japan bans foreigners from entering under omicron variant

TOKYO – Japan will ban new foreigners, such as business travelers, from entering the country starting Tuesday, in response to the Omicron coronavirus variant.

Japanese citizens and foreign residents of Japan returning from overseas trips will still be allowed to enter the country, the government said on Monday.

People returning from nine countries in southern Africa and 14 other countries and regions where Omicron cases are confirmed will face strict quarantine upon arrival, it said.

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said: “This is an urgent precaution to avoid the worst-case scenario. He said the steps are only temporary until the risks of the Omicron variant become apparent.

The decision comes just weeks after the country cautiously reopened its borders to business travelers, foreign workers and students, in response to calls from companies concerned about being left behind by the West.

On Friday, even before the World Health Organization’s announcement to classify Omicron as a worrying variant, the Japanese government said that all visitors to Japan from six countries including South Africa will need must stay at a government-designated hotel or other accommodation facility for 10 days. and undergo testing every few days. Three more countries were later added to the list.

Japan has had relatively few Covid-19 cases recently after a spike in the summer. Over the past few weeks, there have been fewer than two hundred cases a day, the lowest level in more than a year. Nearly 80% of the population is fully vaccinated.

Write to Miho Inada at miho.inada@wsj.com

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/japan-to-bar-entry-of-foreigners-in-response-to-omicron-variant-271638165303?rss=1&siteid=rss Japan bans foreigners from entering under omicron variant

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