The Japanese government, due to the threat of the “Omicron” strain of coronavirus, will extend until the end of February a ban on the entry of foreigners who are not permanent residents of the country. This was announced Tuesday by Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.
“The situation with omicron infections is clearly different here and abroad, so the conditions of the current border control will be maintained until the end of February,” Mainichi quoted the prime minister as saying.
The travel ban for most categories of foreign nationals was imposed last November 30 after the first cases of Omicron strain infection in Japan were confirmed, and was originally planned to last one month. Also, returning Japanese citizens and foreigners permanently residing in Japan were required to undergo quarantine in government designated areas. The number of people returning to Japan per day was limited to 3,500.
In addition, the authorities then prohibited foreigners with residence permits in Japan to come from 11 countries, including South Africa, if they have been there for 14 days before the announcement of restrictions. However, Japan’s Cabinet Secretary General Hirokazu Matsuno later stated that the measures would be lifted “for humanitarian reasons.