Maldives to suspend visa on-arrival amid COVID-19
Published: Mar 26, 2020 07:23 AM

An aeriel view of the China-Maldives Friendship Bridge linking the Maldivian capital of Male with neighboring island Hulhule on Friday Photo: Xinhua

Maldives will suspend issuing visas on-arrival to inbound tourists amid the COVID-19 pandemic, local media reported Wednesday.

President Ibrahim Solih said at a press conference in Male that foreigners would not be allowed to enter the country starting March 27 as a precaution against the COVID-19 pandemic.

The president assured that the government would continue to guarantee basic rights and that electricity, water and public transport would continue to be supplied. He added that food staples would be supplied through the state's trade company State Trading Organization.

He also announced the extension of the closure of schools and government offices for another week.

Photo shows a mesmerizing and stark contrast between the red palm trees and the famed crystal clear water of the Maldives. Using an infra-red filter camera, Italian photographer Paolo Pettigiani captured the spectacular scenery of the picturesque island. Photo: VCG

Maldives had earlier barred entry of passengers who had a travel history in countries with a high number of COVID-19 cases. Other arrivals were being quarantined for 14 days.

Maldives has had 13 confirmed COVID-19 cases, all of whom are foreign citizens. Five patients have made a full recovery, bringing the total number of active cases down to eight.
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