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China Bans Overseas Tourists from SARS-free Tibet Autonomous Region - 2003-05-01


Chinese tourist officials have banned overseas tour groups from visiting Tibet in an effort to stop the spread of SARS.

China's National Tourism Administration also barred tour groups from going to central and western rural areas of China for similar reasons.

It is not clear how long the ban will last. Since Sunday 27 April all international flights into and out of the TAR have been stopped. The last flights from Kathmandu reportedly reached Lhasa International Airport in Gonkar on Saturday 26 April. All border-crossing points were also completely sealed off during the course of Saturday. Official communiques explained these measures as necessary to prevent a spread of the virus from China into Nepal. There have been on cases of SARS reported in Tibet.

Some information for this report provided by AP and TIN.

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