Staff Correspondent ;
Dhaka – Bangladesh has suspended air travel with all countries in Europe but one in a bid to contain spread of the coronavirus outbreak that killed more than 6,500 people worldwide.
In the wake of the virus pandemic, Bangladeshi authorities on Saturday imposed the ban on flights from and to Europe, excluding United Kingdom, to prevent spread of the pathogen as the situation in many European countries have turned worst.
Italy on Sunday announced 3,590 new cases and 368 deaths in just 24 hours amid the worst outbreak outside China. The virus was first found in the Chinese city of Wuhan and spread gradually to other countries.
As air travel with other countries having worst infection rates is also suspended, Bangladesh’s main Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport wore a deserted look.
The manager at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport, Touhidul Alam said any passengers travelling from European countries breaching the ban will be pushed back.
“If any airlines carry them they will have to take them back on their own,” he told reporters in Dhaka.
The frequency of flights at Dhaka airport has reduced to nearly half by this time. Generally Dhaka airport handles 63 flights per day, but now it came down to 38, the official said.
Earlier on Saturday, Bangladesh suspended flights with India. The railway and bus connections between the next-door neighbours have also been suspended because of the virus emergency.
Flights between Oman and Bangladesh are also on the verge of suspension after Oman slapped a travel ban. Biman Bangladesh airliners have rescheduled its Muscat flight from Chattogram few hours ahead of the original time.
Oman will not allow nationals from other countries to enter after midnight of March17. The order will remain effective until further order, according to Biman.
Biman’s return flight from Muscat will remain unchanged.