March 13, 2020 / 10:46 AM / 25 days ago

Ukraine to block entry to residents registered in separatist-held areas to stop coronavirus spread

An officer of the Department of the state guard checks the temperature of a woman as she enters the presidential office building, as a preventive measure against coronavirus (COVID-19) in Kiev, Ukraine March 13, 2020. REUTERS/Valentyn Ogirenko

KIEV (Reuters) - Ukraine’s government at a televised meeting on Friday decided to ban citizens registered in separatist-held territory in the eastern Donbass region from entering government-controlled areas.

The authorities in Kiev are also gearing up to close border checkpoints with countries bordering the European Union in the west, but have not yet specified how many would be closed or when the closures would happen.

The decisions need the final approval from the national security and defense council, which is chaired by President Volodymyr Zelenskiy and will meet later on Friday.

Reporting by Natalia Zinets; writing by Matthias Williams; Editing by Jon Boyle

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