New Zealand Government shutting borders to all but citizens and permanent residents

New Zealand has closed its borders to everyone but citizens and residents in an attempt to stop the spread of coronavirus.

The ban applied to planes boarding after 11.59pm on Thursday – any planes in the air already would not be impacted.

Partners and children of citizens or residents are exempt from the ban, as are some health and humanitarian workers. A full list of exemptions is available here.

The announcement followed a coronavirus cabinet meeting on Thursday and came minutes after Australia banned all non-residents from its country.

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Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern made the announcement on Thursday evening, acknowledging this was an unprecedented move in New Zealand’s history – but a necessary one as the virus spread in other countries.