The Philippines has extended until Aug. 15 its ban on travelers from 10 countries to prevent a surge in Covid-19 cases from happening, Malacañang said on Friday.

The travel ban covers India, Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Oman, United Arab Emirates, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand.

In a statement, Palace spokesman Harry Roque said the travel ban was extended to prevent the spread of the more infectious Delta Covid-19 variant in the country.

As of July 29, the Philippines has recorded 216 Delta variant cases.

Of the total, 97 were recorded on July 29, of which 88 were local cases.

The Delta variant has been causing major Covid-19 surges in Southeast Asian countries.

The variant, which was first detected in India, can infect up to eight people. John Ezekiel J. Hirro