The temporary suspension will begin on April 11 and will remain in effect until April 28, Ardern said at a press conference.
She said it would be the first time New Zealand has prevented its citizens or residents from returning home.
“This is not a permanent arrangement but rather a temporary measure,” Ardern said.
Health officials reported on Thursday that 17 of the 23 cases of COVID-19 detected at the New Zealand border had arrived from India.
Ardern said she fully understands the difficulty the suspension will cause for travelers.
“But I also feel a sense of responsibility and obligation to find ways to reduce the risk to travelers,” she said.
During the suspension, the government would consider how it could reduce the risk of COVID-19 in all high-risk countries.
The suspension would prevent travelers from getting sick and also reduce the risk at New Zealand quarantine facilities, Ardern said. (dpa / NAN)
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