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China temporarily bans foreign nationals due to coronavirus

China is temporarily prohibiting foreign nationals from entering the country in efforts to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.

The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs made the announcement Thursday in a statement to their website saying the suspension will begin Saturday, March 28. There is currently no end date, though the agency said its measures will be “calibrated in light of the evolving situation and announced accordingly.”

The temporary ban will restrict non-Chinese citizens from entering the country, even those who have a valid visa or residency permit. However, visas issued after the announcement will still be recognized, according to the statement. 

The announcement noted that some individuals are exempt, including diplomats and those providing necessary economic, scientific or technological services or emergency humanitarian support.Those groups may apply for visas at Chinese embassies or consulates in their countries, the Foreign Ministry said.

Though China has reported fewer new cases in recent days, that country got more “imported cases” as it relaxed travel constraints, observed Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

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