Digital Desk, Kuala Lumpur. Malaysia’s Health Minister Khairi Jamaluddin said on Wednesday that the government has banned travelers from eight countries to prevent the Omicron variant from spreading in the country. He told a news conference that the affected countries are South Africa, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, Zimbabwe and Malawi.
The ban will apply to migrant workers as well as international students from affected countries. The minister also said that the list would be updated regularly and countries would be added or removed as needed. He said Malaysian citizens, permanent residents and long-term pass holders were not banned, but they would have to undergo a 14-day quarantine upon entry, Xinhua news agency reported.
Khairi also said that plans to introduce vaccination travel lanes with countries affected by Omicron would be put on hold. The Omicron variant was first reported by South Africa to the World Health Organization (WHO) last week. So far, many European countries as well as other countries and territories including Australia, Canada, Israel and Hong Kong in China have confirmed this type of infection.