Passengers wearing face masks amid concerns over the spread of the COVID-19, walk out from the arrivals of the Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi on Wednesday. AFP
New cases in India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka are all accelerating, with the total across the region nearing 700. Six people have died.
Authorities worry that these countries could be especially at risk should the virus begin to spread locally, due to poor health facilities and infrastructure.
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India, the world's second most populous country after China, said it would ban all international commercial passenger flights from landing from Sunday for a week. The country has already suspended visas for the vast majority of foreigners seeking to enter.
Indian airline IndiGo said it would cut the salaries of most of its staff, while rivals SpiceJet and Vistara suspended international flights.
In Indian-ruled Kashmir, claimed in whole but ruled in part by both India and Pakistan, dozens of people told Reuters they had been prevented from leaving their neighborhoods by police and paramilitary units.
Srinagar's senior superintendent of police, Haseeb Mughal, told Reuters that road blockades across the valley had been imposed to prevent the spread of the virus.
"I had to take my mother to hospital in Srinagar but the police closed the road," said Mohammed Ayub, from the nearby town of Budgam.
"I am waiting here for the last two hours. I can't even go home now as the road is blocked due to a traffic jam."
In India, several areas introduced curbs on gatherings as coronavirus cases rose to 166.
Late on Wednesday, the desert state of Rajasthan invoked colonial-era laws that prevent the unlawful assembly of four or more people - powers more often used to quell riots.
Foreigners visitors wearing face masks stand outside the Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi. AFP
Similar restrictions were introduced in Noida, a satellite city of New Delhi.
The financial hub of Mumbai expanded its partial shutdown of offices to government buildings on Thursday, with at least half the staff ordered to work from home.
Online retailers say they are struggling to keep up with demand as consumers stockpile supplies.
"We are seeing unprecedented order volumes in all cities in India," said Hari Menon, chief executive of online grocery retailer BigBasket.
Spain confirmed another 838 deaths in 24 hours from coronavirus on Sunday, a new daily record bringing the total number of deaths to 6,528, according to health ministry figures.
A total of 75,538 deaths have been recorded, including 53,928 in Europe, the continent worst hit by the virus. The official tallies probably reflect only a fraction of the actual number of cases. Many countries are testing only the most serious cases.
In moves to prevent panic over the coronavirus in Iran, the worst-hit country in the Middle East, President Hassan Rouhani appealed to people not to spread rumours and the judiciary banned most officials from announcing numbers of those infected.
Naif police returned Dhs1,200,000 to a company within hours after a gang of Asians stole the amount.The gangsters told the employees of the company that they were policemen, closed the door quickly, seized the money, phones, laptops and fled the place.
Louisiana State University (LSU) freshman Sa’Myah Smith fainted during President Joe Biden’s speech at the White House. The president started the speech, "Folks, we witnessed history… In this team, we saw hope, we saw pride and we saw purpose. It matters.”
The PTI leaders are Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Asad Umar, Azam Swati, Pervaiz Khattak, Ali Amin Gandapur, Farrukh Habib, Aun Abbas, Zartaj Gul and Ali Muhammad Khan. The diplomatic passport of Sheikh Rashid has also been suspended.