February 27, 2020 12:59
More than 30 countries are either banning or restricting travelers from Korea, including some parts of China, where the virus is rampant.
Japan on Wednesday banned any foreigners who have visited Daegu and Cheongdo, North Gyeongsang Province. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe made the decision in a meeting to discuss responses to the outbreak. Japan had already banned travelers from China's Hubei and Zhejiang provinces.
El Salvador and Seychelles banned all visitors from Korea, and the Philippines and Vietnam all travelers from Daegu and North Gyeongsang Province.
Fears are spreading among Korean expats that authorities in their host cities could force them into quarantine as central governments there decline to take responsibility.
The Chinese central government is not banning travelers from Korea, according to Cheong Wa Dae, but some regions including Shanghai are.
The U.S. State Department raised its travel advisory for Korea again on Wednesday, urging travelers to "reconsider travel" to the country. It came two days after the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued its highest travel advisory for Korea, recommending that Americans "avoid all nonessential travel" to Korea.
"If suspected to have COVID-19 (coronavirus) in [Korea], you may face travel delays, quarantine, and extremely expensive medical costs," it said on its website.
But U.S. President Donald Trump said the same day that it is too soon to put travel restrictions on Koreans. "At a right time we may do it," he told reporters. "At the moment it's not the right time."
Meanwhile, a bevy of honeymooners who were denied entry in Mauritius returned to Korea on Wednesday.
The 17 couples flew back by transiting through Dubai.
- Copyright © Chosunilbo & Chosun.com