Kuwait’s government has disclosed that all flights to and from the emirate will be suspended from 13 March.

The suspension over the coronavirus outbreak will remain in effect “until further notice”, the government has declared.

Only Kuwaiti citizens and their immediate relatives will be permitted to fly into the Gulf state.

Kuwait Airways has yet to respond publicly to the decision – which comes a day after the Kuwaiti civil aviation authority claimed there was no truth in rumours that the airport would be shut.

But the flag-carrier had already been implementing blanket cancellations to Bangladesh, the Philippines, India, Sri Lanka, Lebanon and Egypt, and a number of specific flights to other destinations.

Budget operator Jazeera Airways says that all its flights will be suspended when the ruling takes effect.

Jazeera says it has offered passengers “flexibility” to amend bookings given the uncertainty over the coronavirus situation.

Chairman Marwan Boodai says the airline had already “stepped up” its on-board cleaning processes during turnaround in Kuwait, with a new disinfection programme, cabin fumigation, and frequent replacement of air filters.

“Our crew have also taken extra precaution and have been equipped with personal protective medical face masks and gloves,” he adds, while the carrier has avoided routing aircraft to “any major [virus] hot-spots”.

Kuwait’s government has denied that it is to impose a curfew. But it is warning of the risks associated with gatherings, and states that it is restricting access to restaurants, private clubs and gyms from 12 March to 26 March.