UAE Says to Resume Visas for Tourists Vaccinated against Covid

A visitor walks past a Dubai billboard at the Arabian Travel market exhibition in the Gulf emirate, on May 17, 2021. (AFP)
A visitor walks past a Dubai billboard at the Arabian Travel market exhibition in the Gulf emirate, on May 17, 2021. (AFP)
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UAE Says to Resume Visas for Tourists Vaccinated against Covid

A visitor walks past a Dubai billboard at the Arabian Travel market exhibition in the Gulf emirate, on May 17, 2021. (AFP)
A visitor walks past a Dubai billboard at the Arabian Travel market exhibition in the Gulf emirate, on May 17, 2021. (AFP)

The United Arab Emirates announced it will resume issuing visas to all tourists fully vaccinated against Covid from Monday, a month before Dubai hosts the delayed Expo 2020 trade fair.

The move comes amid a drop in coronavirus infections in the Gulf country, after it reported less than 1,000 cases per day last week for the first time in months.

The UAE’s decision to reopen its doors to tourists from all countries was taken in order “to achieve sustainable recovery and economic growth”, the official WAM news agency reported on Saturday.

Those eligible would have to be fully inoculated with one of the Covid-19 vaccines approved by the World Health Organization, which include AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson, Moderna, Pfizer/BioNTech, Sinopharm and Sinovac.

“The decision applies to citizens of all countries, including those arriving from previously banned countries,” WAM said.

“Passengers arriving on tourist visas must take a mandatory PCR test at the airport,” it added.

While life in the UAE has largely returned to normal amid the Covid pandemic, it continues to enforce strict rules on wearing masks and social distancing.

Dubai was last year counting on the six-month Dubai Expo 2020 -- delayed a year by the health crisis and now set to open in October -- to attract millions of visitors and boost the economy.

Heavily reliant on tourism, the emirate was one of the first destinations to open its doors to travelers, accepting tourists in July last year, just a few months after the pandemic took hold.

Abu Dhabi, meanwhile, has been more cautious, opening up to some visitors only in December.

The UAE as so far recorded more than 715,000 cases of Covid-19 infection, including 2,036 deaths.



Saudi Leadership Congratulated on Success of Hajj

Muslim pilgrims walk on the second day of the devil stoning ritual, during the annual haj pilgrimage, in Mina, Saudi Arabia, June 17, 2024. (Reuters)
Muslim pilgrims walk on the second day of the devil stoning ritual, during the annual haj pilgrimage, in Mina, Saudi Arabia, June 17, 2024. (Reuters)
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Saudi Leadership Congratulated on Success of Hajj

Muslim pilgrims walk on the second day of the devil stoning ritual, during the annual haj pilgrimage, in Mina, Saudi Arabia, June 17, 2024. (Reuters)
Muslim pilgrims walk on the second day of the devil stoning ritual, during the annual haj pilgrimage, in Mina, Saudi Arabia, June 17, 2024. (Reuters)

Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz received on Tuesday messages of congratulations from Arab leaders on the success of this year’s Hajj.

United Arab Emirates (UAE) President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Emir of Kuwait Sheikh Mishal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah and Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Isa Al-Khalifa sent King Salman separate cables of congratulations.

They credited the success of the Hajj to the grace of God Almighty and the generous care of King Salman and his government and its institutions to ensure that pilgrims can perform their rituals in tranquility and safety.

Sheikh Mishal praised the progress of the expansion work carried out at the Grand Mosque, and the introduction of smart services and technologies at all holy sites to meet the needs of pilgrims and facilitate their performance of the Hajj.

He praised the significant role of Advisor to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, Governor of Makkah Region, and Chairman of the Central Hajj Committee Prince Khalid Al-Faisal, and Minister of Interior and Chairman of the Supreme Hajj Committee Prince Abdulaziz bin Saud bin Naif bin Abdulaziz for their tireless efforts and the coordination among all sectors concerned with Hajj affairs.

He wished Saudi Arabia and its noble people further progress and prosperity under the wise and prudent leadership of King Salman.

UAE Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President, Deputy Prime Minister and Chairman of the Presidential Court Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Kuwaiti Crown Prince Sheikh Sabah Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah and Kuwaiti Prime Minister Sheikh Ahmad Abdullah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah sent cables of congratulations to King Salman.