Children wearing facial masks, as a precaution after Nepal confirmed the first case of coronavirus in the country, attend a lecture at Matribhumi School in Thimi, Bhaktapur, Nepal January 29, 2020. REUTERS/Navesh Chitrakar

Kathmandu [Nepal], Mar 18: Nepal on Wednesday imposed restriction on the entry of all arrivals and transit flights from Europe, West Asia, and the Middle East in a bid to contain the rapid spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

A high-level committee formed under the chairmanship of Deputy Prime Minister Ishwor Pokhrel pondered over implementing measures to prevent the killer bug from infecting more people in the Himalayan nation. “All the passengers from European nations, East Asia and Middle East countries, such as Iran, Turkey, Malaysia, South Korea, Japan and those having transit in them (nations) from wherever their flight originates would be prohibited entry starting from mid-night of 20th March, 2020 to 15th April, 2020. Information regarding it will be disseminated by the Nepali missions and other concerned bodies abroad,” the Committee said.

The Government of Nepal has already announced the closure of venues including theaters, fitness centers, and sporting grounds, which draws a large number of people till April 30 to prevent possible infection. Nepal, so far, has confirmed only one case of infection in January who has been completely cured of the infection. At least 7,529 people globally have died from COVID-19, as the illness is officially known, while more than 180,000 infections have been confirmed in at least 150 countries and territories, according to the World Health Organization. (ANI)