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Overseas residents may return without approval

Overseas residents may return without approval

 Sri Lankans abroad will be allowed to return to the country as of December 26 without the approval of the Secretary of Foreign Affairs or the Civil Aviation Authority, subject to compliance with quarantine paid at a designated hotel, reported the Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Admiral Prof. Jayanath Colombage, to Aviation. and airline authorities on Saturday.

Issuing new instructions on routine operations after the planned reopening of international airports on December 26, the Foreign Secretary said that Sri Lankan nationals or foreigners of Sri Lankan origin (holders of dual citizenship) they could travel anywhere commercial or not repatriated. flights to Sri Lanka without the approval of the Secretary of Foreign Affairs or the Civil Aviation Authority.

However, this is subject to the passenger per flight limit determined by the Civil Aviation Authority, based on the concurrence of the National Operations Center for the Prevention of the COVID-19 Outbreak (NOCPCO).

However, special flights to bring back stranded Sri Lankan workers will continue in the meantime. "The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and NOCPCO will organize special repatriation flights for government quarantine facilities in coordination with Sri Lankan missions abroad for migrant workers, students, patients, short-term visa holders and government and military officials. "stated the Revised Procedure for Inbound Travelers.

The new instructions were based on the joint decision of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Immigration Department and the Civil Aviation Authority and were also agreed upon by the Presidential Task Force for Economic Reactivation and Poverty Alleviation.

"It is the sole responsibility of the airline in question to ensure that passengers allowed on board under the previous agreement strictly adhere to paid quarantine," the newly issued instructions said.

According to the revised procedure, exceptions to paid quarantine arrangements for critical patients, as well as government and military officials may be granted on the recommendations made by the Sri Lankan diplomatic mission in the country of origin, when traveling for commercial reasons or non-repatriation. flights.

It has also been stated that the existing standard operating procedures will remain unchanged with respect to passengers from India.

"The existing procedure for granting individual permits will remain in effect for foreigners, including members of the diplomatic corps, foreign or international organizations based in Sri Lanka and returning Sri Lankan seafarers," he added.

Foreign tourists will also be able to enter the country as of December 26, subject to strict COVID tests and quarantine conditions, with pre-established visas.

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