Hong Kong bans passenger flights from Indonesia over COVID-19 fears

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Hong Kong will ban passenger flights from Indonesia from Friday, deeming the country’s arrivals “extremely high risk” for the coronavirus.

The Hong Kong government said late on Wednesday it was suspending flights after the number of imported COVID-19 cases from Indonesia crossed thresholds set by the global financial hub.

Hong Kong has already banned arrivals from India, Nepal, Pakistan and the Philippines, using a flight suspension rule triggered when there are five or more passengers who test positive for one of the variant COVID-19 cases on arrival, or 10 or more passengers found to have any strain of the disease while in quarantine.

The Chinese special administrative region has recorded over 11,800 cases and 210 deaths due to the coronavirus. Most of the city’s recent cases over the past month have been imported.

Indonesia’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement that Hong Kong’s ban was “temporary” and that migrant workers affected by the new regulation should contact their employers and agents.

Hong Kong employs thousands of migrant workers from countries including Indonesia and the Philippines. – REUTERS

by Farah Master and Angie Teo. Editing by Jane Wardell

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