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Covid-19 watchlist reduced by Seven nations

The Ministry of Public Health has revoked its previous declaration of seven countries as Covid-19 danger zones, citing an improvement in the pandemic situation and the global vaccination coverage against coronavirus.

The decision to remove Italy, Iran, Malaysia, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Indonesia from the list of dangerous epidemic areas was reached at a meeting of the national committee on disease control held on Friday.

Signed by Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul, the announcement was published in the Royal Gazette and came into effect on Saturday.

With the Omicron variant appearing to be far less virulent than its predecessors, from July 1 Thailand has eased most of its remaining Covid-19 restrictions.

Only a small number of imported infections have been detected among tens of thousands of arrivals per day, said Dr Kiattiphum Wongrajit, permanent secretary for public health.

The seven countries’ removal from the list was one of two key decisions made by the committee on Friday, he said.

The other was the declaration of monkeypox as Thailand’s 56th communicable disease.

However, no case of the disease has been detected in Thailand so far, he said.

According to the World Health Organization, more than 6,000 cases of monkeypox worldwide have been recorded across 58 countries.

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