UPDATE – AIRPORTS WON’T ‘CLOSE’: Norwegian citizens and residents will be allowed to enter, foreigners to depart, ministry says in clarification to policy starting Monday


Norway’s airport won’t actually “close” as of 8 a.m. Monday, as Norwegian citizen and foreigners with residency permits will be allowed to enter the country, the Ministry of Justice and Public Security stated Saturday evening in a clarification of an earlier announcement that resulted in widespread confusion.

“All Norwegian citizens and people who live or work in Norway will still be able to enter the country,” the ministry declared in a press statement. As for the ban on foreigners, “exceptions will therefore be provided for EEA citizens and their family members residing in Norway. Exceptions are also made for EEA citizens working in Norway.”

Additional restrictions are in place for Svalbard, which is requiring all residents and visitors under a mandatory quarantine order retroactive to Feb. 27 to relocate to the mainland. That restriction announced Friday is now in the process of being enacted.

Tromsø, which has 10 coronavirus cases as of Sunday, is also enacting tougher restrictions with a ban on Norwegian citizens and residents from the southern part of the country. Northern Norway has far fewer cases overall than the southern portion, as the more than 900 people testing positive for the virus nationwide places it among the 10 most-affected countries.