March 17, 2020 / 4:06 PM / 11 days ago

Italians returning home from abroad must self-isolate for 14 days: government

A airport worker wearing a protective face mask gestures at Rome's Fiumicino airport, on the third day of an unprecedented lockdown across of all Italy imposed to slow the outbreak of coronavirus, in Rome, Italy, March 12, 2020. REUTERS/Yara Nardi

ROME (Reuters) - Italy’s government ruled on Tuesday that all Italians returning to the country from abroad must self-isolate for 14 days, in a further effort to limit the spread of coronavirus.

Growing numbers of Italians abroad are seeking to return home as the virus spread in other European countries.

The rules will be valid until March 25 and apply regardless of whether people have symptoms, the transport ministry said in a statement. It is not applied to those who enter Italy for working reasons and leave the country within 72 hours.

Italy has already imposed strict limitations to citizens’ movements within its borders and has reduced the connections between the mainland and its two main islands, Sicily and Sardinia.

Reporting by Giuseppe Fonte, writing by Angelo Amante, editing by Gavin Jones

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