Citizens of 80 countries including India can now enter Qatar without visa

Police officers are at the scene of a stabbing attack near Damascus Gate of Jerusalem's Old City

The new visa waiver program is effective immediately and comprises countries from all over the world, including the U.S., U.K., Mexico, China, France, Germany, Spain and Cuba, among others.

Qatar announced yesterday a program to allow visa-free entry for citizens of 80 countries to encourage air transport and tourism amid a two-month boycott imposed on the Gulf state by its neighbors.

Citizens of 46 other countries will also get up to 30 days visa-free access, while citizens of 33 other countries - including most of the European Union with the notable exception of Ireland - will be given 90 days visa-free access.

These developments come as part of a series of measures that Qatar has taken to facilitate visitor access to the country.

The country has made provisions to allow people from dozens of countries in Europe including India, Lebanon, New Zealand, South Africa, and the United States to receive tourist visa on arrival.

Nationals of the 33 countries including Malta will not require prior visa arrangements and can obtain a visa waiver upon arrival in Qatar, according to Visit Qatar.

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Bahrain, UAE recently agreed to open up airspace for Qatar Airways.

However, Qatar's official travel site Visit Qatar published a list of selected countries.

Doha said the statements were fabricated and disseminated via a hack.

"Together with our partners in the public and private sectors, we have examined all of the elements needed to create a smooth and enticing experience that can attract visitors from around the world".

Brigadier Mohammed Al Ateeq, Director General of the Department of Passport and Expatriates Affairs at MoI, commented, "We are very pleased to announce that nationals of 80 countries are now eligible for a visa waiver and can enter Qatar without requiring any prior visa arrangements".

In May 2017, QTA and Qatar Airways launched +Qatar a package that included a free night's stay in a 5- or 4- star hotel in Doha, alongside a complimentary transit visa. The minimum period for which the waiver would be valid is reported to be 30 days, followed by an extension of another month.

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