The global positive and mortality cases still increase in addition to the spread of COVID-19 new variant B.1.1.529
Jakarta (ANTARA) - The government's decision to temporarily limit the entry of foreign nationals into Indonesia is appropriate to prevent the emergence of the Omicron coronavirus variant, Deputy Chairman of the People's Consultative Assembly (MPR) Syarief Hasan has said.

"The global positive and mortality cases still increase in addition to the spread of COVID-19 new variant B.1.1.529," Hasan noted in a written statement issued here on Monday.

The government had to take an assertive decision regarding foreign nationals' entry into the country, considering that some countries have reported several cases of the new COVID-19 variant Omicron, he said. Therefore, the government must show sensitivity to the people's condition, he added.

"This can improve the people's perspective on the government's sensitivity to the small community that is being impacted economically," he said.

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The policy that has been issued must really be reinforced, he said. There should not be any policy loosening, like what happened months ago with the entry ban on foreign nationals, he added.

According to many analyses, there was potential for the new variant of COVID-19 entering Indonesia from abroad, he noted. Therefore, when the government admitted that the Delta and Mu variants started overseas, the entry of foreign nationals should have been banned, Hasan said.

The entry of foreign nationals into a country is a normal thing, he added. However, it should be prohibited in the transition period to prevent the emergence of new variants, he said.

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"It should be affirmed that we are currently in the transition period after passing through the second wave of COVID-19," Hasan added.

The government should evaluate policies that have been taken by other countries that have successfully exited the pandemic, he said. They could achieve this because there were strict limitations on the mobility of foreign nationals and the community, he noted.

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Translator: M Zulfikar, Kenzu T
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
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