PH lifts Taiwan travel ban
The Philippines lifted the temporary travel ban to Taiwan, according to Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo.
Panelo said the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases decided to lift the travel restrictions effective immediately because of strict measures being undertaken by Taiwan to contain the spread of the new coronavirus or COVID-19.
The government this week included Taiwan in the travel ban ordered on Feb. 2 by President Rodrigo Duterte on China and its administrative regions Hong Kong and Macau to contain the spread of the virus.
DOH Spokesperson Eric Domingo on Monday announced Taiwan was being included in the travel ban as the World Health Organization considers it a part of China.
The move drew criticisms including from Taipei, which said it was considering countermeasures if the Philippines did not lift the ban. Taiwan is a self-governed island that China considers as its province. The Philippines follows a One-China policy that recognizes Beijng and limits dealings with Taiwan to economic and cultural ties.
Filipino workers have also appealed to Duterte to lift the ban, with those in the Philippines en route to Taiwan expressing fears they would lose their jobs.
The travel ban restricts the entry of foreign nationals coming directly from China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan and those with travel history to those areas in the last 14 days. Filipinos and holders of permanent resident visas are allowed entry but have to undergo 14 days of mandatory quarantine. Flights to the areas by local airlines have also been canceled.
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