The announcement comes at a time when everyday COVID infections are on the rise. Saudi Arabia has imposed tight travel restrictions in reaction to the recent increase in COVID infections and the re-emergence of COVID-19.

Saudi nationals are barred from visiting anywhere in the Middle East or North Africa save their own country, according to Gulf News. They are unable to travel to Afghanistan, Yemen, Somalia, Ethiopia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, or Libya.

Saudi Arabia’s health ministry has assured the public that there are no cases of monkeypox in the country. According to Abdullah Asiri, the deputy minister of health for preventative health, if a new incidence of monkeypox occurs, the Kingdom is prepared to deal with it.

There have been relatively few examples of human-to-human transmission until recently, so even in nations where cases have been discovered, the likelihood of epidemics arising from it is very low, he continued.

The World Health Organization has confirmed 80 monkeypox cases in 11 different countries (WHO). According to the WHO, the virus is endemic to select animal populations in several nations and only causes outbreaks among residents and visitors on rare occasions.

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