Italy has also banned travellers from Brazil and 11 other countries it considers to pose a high risk of Covid-19 transmission
The Italian government banned the entry of all passengers from Bangladesh, including Bangladeshi citizens, till October 5 in a bid to fight the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
The move came on Thursday following the incident of a significant number of passengers of a special flight of Biman Bangladesh Airlines testing positive for Covid-19 once they had landed at an airport in Italy’s Rome on July 6.
Initially, the Italian authorities issued a one-week suspension in response to the incident but now with the new directives’ passengers flying from Bangladesh will not be allowed to enter the European country, said multiple media reports citing a Qatar Airways statement sent to its business partners.
Italy's Ministry of Health already issued a notice to airmen (NOTAM) regarding this on Thursday, reports a Dhaka-based news outlet.
“Upon request of the Italian health ministry all flights/passengers from Bangladesh with final destination to Italy are bidden.
“Effective from July 8 and valid till October 5, 2020, passengers are not allowed to travel to Italy from Bangladesh irrespective of any nationality and irrespective of any routing involved where the flight originates from Bangladesh,” read Qatar Airways statement issued on Thursday.
Moreover, a total of 151 Bangladeshis, who were barred from disembarking from a plane at an Italy airport on suspicion of being Covid-19 positive, are expected to return to Dhaka by Friday, said airport sources.
Italy also banned travellers from Brazil and 11 other countries it considers to pose a high risk of Covid19 transmission, reports AFP.
The full list comprises Armenia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bosnia, Brazil, Chile, the Dominican Republic, Kuwait, North Macedonia, Moldova, Oman, Panama and Peru.
The decree banning visitors from those countries from entering Italy was signed by the health ministry in agreement with the foreign, interior and transport ministries.
‘Throughout the world, the pandemic has entered a more acute phase,’ said Health Minister Roberto Speranza.
‘We cannot throw away the sacrifices made by Italians in recent months,’ he added.
Italy was the first country to be hit by the virus after it emerged in China late last year.
Almost 35,000 people have died of the virus in Italy, according to official figures, from more than 242,000 cases.
The spread of the coronavirus has been slowed with 12 new deaths declared on Thursday, from 15 the previous day.
Brazil has suffered the highest number of Covid-19 fatalities apart from the United States, with nearly 68,000 dead, according to an AFP count.
As of Thursday, Bangladesh had confirmed as many as 175,494 coronavirus cases with the death toll rising to 2,238 after 41 new fatalities were reported.
The fast-spreading Covid-19 has so far killed 554,000 people and infected 12,270,000 in more than 213 countries and territories.