Japan will ban entry to foreign nationals after Covid-19 variant detected in country

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Japan will ban foreign nationals from entering the country from Monday through the end of January after several cases of the new Covid-19 variant were recorded in the country, the Japanese foreign ministry said in a statement on Saturday.

Japanese citizens and foreign residents can still enter, but they’re required to self-quarantine for 14 days, according to Japan’s public broadcaster, NHK.

The move came after the Tokyo metropolitan government on Saturday confirmed two new cases of Covid-19 variant involving people who recently returned from the UK. The two new cases were the first to be discovered outside of airport quarantine in the country.

On Friday, five other travelers from Britain were detected with the variant at Japan’s international airports.

The new coronavirus variant is said to have originated in the UK and be potentially more transmissible. Since its discovery, more than 40 countries have restricted travel from the UK, and in some cases, travel from other countries that have documented cases with the variant.

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