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S. Korea to temporarily halt visa waivers for countries with entry bans on Koreans

09:09 April 08, 2020

SEOUL, April 8 (Yonhap) -- South Korea will temporarily suspend visa waiver programs for countries imposing entry bans on Koreans over the new coronavirus as it seeks to stem imported infections, the prime minister said Wednesday.

Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun also said the government will expand entry restrictions on foreigners traveling without essential and urgent purposes.

"While maintaining the basis of openness, the government will strengthen (entry) restrictions in accordance with reciprocity," Chung said at a pan-government meeting to discuss ways to contain COVID-19.

The stricter move comes as imported cases of the new coronavirus have accounted for the bulk of new infections.

Since April 1, South Korea has imposed a mandatory two-week quarantine on all international arrivals in a bid to stem continued rises in imported cases.

A foreign traveler receives the test for the new coronavirus at an outdoor testing center at Incheon International Airport, South Korea's main gateway west of Seoul, on March 26, 2020. (Yonhap)

sooyeon@yna.co.kr
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