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Korea to require foreigners arriving from high-risk nations to submit proof of negative virus test

South Korea will require foreigners arriving from high-risk nations to submit a certificate showing they tested negative for the new coronavirus from Monday, as the nation struggles with a steady rise in imported cases. 

The high-risk nations are Bangladesh, Pakistan, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, according to websites of South Korean embassies in the nations. 

Starting Monday, foreign nationals from the four nations will be required to provide certificates issued within 48 hours proving they have tested negative for COVID-19 on a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test. 

The certificates must be issued from medical institutions and testing centers chosen by South Korean diplomatic missions.

The government will expand the requirement to 11 other nations if the number of imported cases from the nations continues to rise. 

The average number of daily imported cases stood at six in May and 11 in June. But, the number has jumped to 20 this month. 

In particular, larger numbers of foreign arrivals from the four nations have tested positive for the virus in South Korea, officials said. 

Strict quarantine regulations on Pakistan and Bangladesh are already in place. South Korea began to suspend visa issuance and non-scheduled flights from the two countries from June 23. 

South Korea has also ordered regular flights from such countries to limit the number of passengers to 60 percent of capacity. Those who depart for countries with large outbreaks will face strict entry processes when returning to South Korea, health authorities said. (Yonhap)