Japan on Tuesday said it has extended the quarantine period for travelers who have recently been to India and five other South Asian countries amid growing concerns over B.1.617 Covid-19 variant.
The Japanese government said that those people who recently traveled to India, Bangladesh, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, have to complete 10 days of mandatory quarantine period instead of six days.
The government will newly impose a three-day quarantine period on travelers who have been to Kazakhstan and Tunisia, with a coronavirus test on the final day, Kyodo News reported.
The move is set to take effect on Friday.
As Japan has already banned the entry of foreign nationals, including those with resident status, who have been to the six countries within the past two weeks, except under special circumstances, the measure primarily effects Japanese citizens.
“There is a strong feeling of unease among the Japanese people regarding coronavirus variants, so we have decided to further tighten border controls in order to protect their health and lives,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato told a press conference according to Kyodo news agency.
The country has registered 718,864 confirmed cases and 12,312 deaths till yesterday (Monday). As of May 15, a total of 5,593,436 vaccine doses have been administered in the country, according to the World Health Organisation.