Canada continues to ban direct passenger flights from India and Pakistan. The ban was extended until June 21 after increased Covid-19 cases were discovered in travelers arriving from these countries.
The legislation, which was first revealed on April 22, was due to expire on Saturday.
At a press conference, Transportation Minister Canada, Omar Alghabra said, “Our battle against Covid-19 continues.”
“On April 22 Transport Canada issued a notice to ban all direct commercial and private passenger flights from India and Pakistan for 30 days based on public health advice to reduce the importation risk of Covid-19 and its variants,” he said. “We are now extending this measure to June 21.
The number of effective Covid-19 cases arriving on foreign flights has dropped significantly, according to the minister.
But “based on public health advice,” he said, “this is not the right time to consider loosening any border control measures.”
More than 26 million Covid-19 cases have been recorded in India, which has been experiencing an unprecedented increase blamed on a “double mutant” variant and super-spreader incidents.
Just 1.8 percent of visitors to Canada tested positive for coronavirus last month, according to Ottawa. But, although India accounts for 20% of air travel to Canada, more than half of all positive tests at the border came from flights originating from the region.
Quarantine is needed for all visitors to Canada for 14 days. They must also show a negative Covid test before flying internationally and another after they arrive in Canada.
On the other hand, Pakistan confirmed 4,007 fresh covid-19 cases in the last 24 hours, bringing the overall number of cases to nearly 900,000 on Saturday as the nation navigates the third wave.
According to the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC), at least 88 more people have died as a result of the outbreak, bringing the total number of people who have died to 20,177.
Meanwhile, with 63,436 active cases throughout the country, Pakistan’s covid-19 positivity rate was 6.43 percent.
In addition, 813,855 citizens in the world have recovered from the virus so far.