Iraq bans foreign arrivals from China for fears of coronavirus

BAGHDAD: The interior of Iraq announced on Sunday that it would not allow foreigners traveling from China to enter the fear of a coronavirus outbreak. In an online statement, the ministry said the step was part of the protection measures taken by everyone to combat the new, and for the commitment to protect its citizens from its disastrous effects and negative consequences for the public and the public. security.

Iraqi authorities said on Friday they had not detected any cases of coronaviruses in Iraq or among Iraqi expatriates abroad.

Similar to the SARS pathogen, the coronavirus emerged in the Chinese city of Wuhan last year and has been declared a global health emergency by the World Health Organization.

It has infected almost 14,500 people in China and more than 100 in 20 other countries, including the United States.

More than 300 people died in China and the first foreign death in the Philippines was reported on Sunday.

Last week, a spokesman for the Iraqi Foreign Ministry told AFP authorities they were working to repatriate up to 50 Iraqi citizens, students and their families, from Wuhan.

Iraq has no direct flights from China, but hundreds of Chinese citizens work in lucrative oil fields across the country, which is OPEC's second largest oil producer.

Iraq's public health system has been devastated by years of conflict and low investment.