Organisers of the 2022 FIFA World Cup on Thursday said that fans attending the event in Qatar must show proof of a negative COVID-19 test regardless of their vaccination status.
Qatar’s Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy said in a statement that all visitors aged six and over must present a negative result from a PCR test.
The test must have been taken within 48 hours before their departure or from a rapid antigen test taken in the 24 hours before arriving.
The statement said that results of the rapid antigen tests would only be accepted if they are from official medical centres and not self-administered.
However, no further tests would be required in Qatar if visitors do not develop symptoms of COVID-19.
It added that visitors aged 18 and above will also be required to download a government-run contact-tracing phone application called Ehteraz.
“A green Ehteraz status (showing the user does not have a confirmed case of COVID-19) is required to enter any public closed indoor spaces,’’ the statement added.
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It also said that fans would have to wear masks on public transport.
But it added that vaccination was not mandatory for the unprecedented influx of 1.2 million visitors expected for the Nov. 20 to Dec. 18 tournament.
“Anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 while in Qatar will be required to isolate in accordance with Ministry of Public Health guidelines,’’ the statement said.
Qatar has recorded more than 440,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 692 deaths from the virus, according to data from the Ministry of Public Health.
The country has a population of 2.8 million, of which barely 380,000 are Qatari nationals.
A total of 7,487,616 vaccine doses have been administered so far, the data states.(Reuters/NAN)