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WHO: Closing borders ineffective in fight against Covid-19

WHO: Closing borders ineffective in fight against Covid-19

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has argued travel restrictions “do not provide added value” in the fight against Covid-19.

Updating advice on international regulations to combat the virus, the body said international traffic bans should be lifted or eased.

“The failure of travel restrictions introduced after the detection and reporting of Omicron variant to limit international spread of Omicron demonstrates the ineffectiveness of such measures over time,” a statement added.


The WHO added such bans “contribute to the economic and social stress experiences” by states, and were thus counterproductive.

The international body also advised destinations not to require proof of vaccination against Covid-19 for international travel.

This was the only way of permitting international travel to restart, given limited global access and inequitable distribution of Covid-19 vaccines, a statement explained.

States should instead consider a risk-based approach to the facilitation of international travel by lifting or modifying measures, such as testing and quarantine, when appropriate, the WHO said.