The Government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has accused Iran of knowingly spreading COVID-19 Coronavirus to the Kingdom by “irresponsibly” granting Saudi citizens entry to its territories without stamping their passports, especially at a time where there is an outbreak of COVID-19 in Iran.
An official statement from the Kingdom’s ministry of Health today, March 5, said that the five confirmed cases of Saudi nationals testing positive for COVID-19 all returned from Iran via Bahrain and Kuwait without disclosing the fact that they had traveled to Iran to the relevant Saudi authorities.
The statement which stressed that the kingdom strongly denounced Iran’s “irresponsible action,” said that such actions are a proof of Iran’s direct responsibility in increasing COVID-19 infections and in the virus’s outbreak all around the world.
“This behavior poses a serious public health threat to the international community and undermines international efforts to combat COVID-19, putting many communities around the world at risk.”
The Kingdom, in the statement, advised all Saudi citizens who had visited and returned from Iran during the past weeks to immediately report this matter and to contact the health ministry via the toll-free number (937) so that they may be guided through the necessary safety measures.
It also urged citizens who are currently in Iran to immediately report their travel to Iran upon their arrival in the Kingdom.
“Citizens who voluntary report their travel to Iran during a time window of 48 hours following this statement will not be subjected to the Travel Documents Law and its related regulations.”
The statement added that the Kingdom is keen on ensuring the safety of all citizens who had visited Iran by providing them with this opportunity and refraining from any legal action against them.
“Furthermore, the Kingdom is determined to protect the families of those who had traveled to places where there is an outbreak of COVID-19; such measures aim to help protect their wellbeing and the safety of others.”
The Saudi government reaffirmed that Saudi citizens should not travel to Iran for any reason, stressing that serious legal actions will be taken against those who commit this act going forward.
The Kingdom called upon Iranian authorities to disclose the identities of Saudi nationals who had illegally visited Iran since the 1st of February, even as it made it clear that it would hold the Iranian authorities fully responsible for all Saudis who did not report their travels and had gotten infected during their stay in Iran.
It said that the Iranian regime’s continuous withholding of the identity of Saudi nationals who had secretly traveled to Iran and allowing them to do so illegally, threatens public health not only in the Kingdom but on international level as well.