Oman bans all direct flights from UK as new Covid measures are introduced

The move comes after the UK placed Oman on it’s travel red list

FILE PHOTO: A plane approaching Leeds Bradford airport passes in front of the sun in Leeds May 26, 2013. REUTERS/Philip Brown/File Photo
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Oman announced on Wednesday it was suspending all direct flights from the UK.

Travellers who transited through the UK in the past 14 days will also be prohibited from entering Oman.

The measure will come into effect on Friday, March 19 at noon.

Oman's Supreme Committee said citizens and cargo flights were exempt from the order.

The decision comes after Oman was added to England's travel red list on Monday. Ethiopia, Somalia and Qatar were also added to the list.

Due to a surge in Covid-19 cases, the sultanate announced a number of new safety measures.

All commercial activities in the country have been ordered to close from 8pm to 5am. There are a number of exemptions to the night closures, including fuel stations, home delivery services, health institutions, pharmacies, and factories that do not deal directly with customers.

The measures will be in place until April 3.

In addition, some government workplaces will reduce employee attendance to 70 per cent of total staff, from March 21 to April 1.

Oman's ministry of health announced on Sunday that more than 1,600 Covid-19 cases were reported, the highest daily toll since October 18.

On Wednesday, the number of Covid-19 cases recorded in the Sultanate since the pandemic was declared reached 148,558, while recoveries stood at 137,544.

Meanwhile, the total number of Covid-19 related deaths stood at 1,617.

The ministry said 50 people were admitted to hospitals  over the past 24 hours and the total number of inpatients stood at 291, with 82 in intensive care units.