RAWALPINDI: The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has made the Covid-19 test mandatory for diplomats, diplomatic staff and their families traveling to Pakistan.
They would also undergo a rapid antigen test (RAT) upon arrival in the country.
In case of a positive RAT result, the diplomats will be required to undergo mandatory indoor quarantine in their respective embassies or home.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will ensure the implementation of the standard operating procedures (SOPs) pertaining to the home quarantine.
Following the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) notification regarding travel and quarantine restrictions for diplomats, CAA Director Air Transport stated that diplomats, diplomatic staff and their families are bound to carry a negative Covid-19 PCR test certification conducted within 72 hours prior to commencement of their travel to Pakistan.
Meanwhile, the CAA has also specified designated laboratories for Covid-19 testing for inbound passengers from UAE and Bahrain.
Based on input from the Pakistan missions in UAE and Bahrain, all airlines operating to and from Pakistan have been directed to accept negative Covid-19 PCR tests conducted by the specified laboratories only.
All the airline operators have been directed to accept only those passengers holding valid negative PCR test results from a designated laboratory for travel to Pakistan.
The CAA has specified 10 laboratories in Abu Dhabi and Al-Ain, seven laboratories in Ras Al Khaimaah, seven in Sharjah, eight in Fujairah, five in Ajman, four in Umm Al Quwain and 11 in Bahrain.
The CAA has already issued a fresh advisory extending the restrictions on inbound flights to Pakistan and curtailing them by 80pc until June 15.
CAA spokesman Saad bin Ayub said a notification in this regard was issued by the department of air transportation on Wednesday.
He said domestic flights will be limited to 20pc but an additional 30pc will be allowed to carry cargo.
And permission for 50pc of foreign flights from Pakistan has also been extended till June 15, he said.
All airlines/operators shall be required to adhere to the applicable
respective standard operating procedures (SOPS) issued from time to time, he added.
Published in Dawn, May 22nd, 2021