The UAE Ministry of Health has advised citizens and residents to avoid travelling abroad unless it is absolutely necessary, in light of ongoing coronavirus outbreak.

According to a report by the WAM state news agency, those who do travel will be subject to follow-up checks on their return and may be kept in quarantine at home, the ministry said.

The report added that rapid laboratory testing and control procedures have also been activated at UAE border crossings, where more than 30,000 tests have been conducted since the virus appeared.

On Wednesday, the UAE's Education Ministry announced that the spring holiday will start earlier, and all public and private schools and higher education institutions across the country will close for four weeks, starting Sunday, with a process of distance learning employed for pupils.

Students and staff who have travelled will be placed in home quarantine for 14 days and will not be allowed to enter educational facilities before that period expires.

During the next four weeks, some 600 schools will undergo a rigorous deep clean and over 3,000 buses will be sterilised.

Dubai is home to Emirates airline, the world's biggest airline by international traffic, and Abu Dhabi owns Etihad Airways. Both airlines have encouraged staff to take leave.

Source: National News Agency