China's suspension of entry of non-Chinese nationals holding valid
visas and residence permits traveling from some foreign countries is a
temporary measure made necessary by the COVID-19 pandemic situation,
Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said on Thursday.
He spoke after the Chinese embassies in the United Kingdom, Belgium,
the Philippines and India announced restrictions on travelers from those
countries in notices released this week.
Wang told reporters at a regular news briefing in Beijing that the
adjustment is based on practices overseas and also in light of the
changing pandemic situation.
"It is legitimate, reasonable and in line with international
practices," the spokesman said, adding that China thinks it will be
understood. Wang added that the Chinese embassies will update the
notices with changes in the pandemic situation.
The new suspension came after China eased its restrictions by
allowing the entry into China by foreign nationals holding three
categories of valid Chinese residence permits on Sept 28. In March,
China had suspended the entry of foreigners holding valid visas and
residence permits in response to COVID-19.
Starting on Thursday, England entered a monthlong lockdown and
Britain's death toll rose to the highest in Europe as it grapples with
more than 20,000 new coronavirus cases a day. The Philippines has the
second-highest number of infections and deaths in Southeast Asia after
Indonesia, Reuters reported.