Iraqi coronavirus committee signals that travel restriction will be relaxed

An Iraqi Airways plane seen at the Erbil International Airport in Erbil, Iraq September 29, 2017. REUTERS/Azad Lashkari

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SULAIMANI — In an apparent signal that coronavirus restrictions may be relaxed soon, the Higher Committee for Health and National Safety in Iraq said on Thursday (July 9) that all Iraqis will be allowed to travel outside the country on the condition they are quarantined for fourteen days on their return.

The committee said that the ban on traveling will be lifted, but that Iraqi citizens who do travel must follow health guidelines designed to prevent the spread of the virus.

The committee added that a returnee tests positive that they will be quarantined and monitored at their homes for two weeks, which is generally seen as the incubation period of the novel coronavirus.

On March 16, the authorities implemented travel restrictions, including by halting all passenger flights. The Iraq Civil Aviation Authority (ICAA) recently extended that ban until July 15.

Despite the Higher Committee’s decision, coronavirus remains a serious problem in Iraq, with 2,170 new cases and 103 deaths announced on Thursday.

According to the health ministry, there have been 69,612 cases of coronavirus in Iraq. 39,502 patients have recovered from COVID-19, the disease caused by coronavirus infection, and 2,882 have died from it.

(NRT Digital Media)