Russia will close its land borders with Poland and Norway to foreigners to try to limit the spread of the coronavirus, the country’s prime minister has said.

Mikhail Mishustin said the ban will come into force at midnight and apply to all international visitors travelling ‘for professional, private, study or tourist reasons’.

It will not include Belarusians, members of official delegations and residents of Russia.

As of yesterday Russia confirmed it had recorded 45 cases of the virus as the epicentre of the pandemic swept from Asia to Europe.

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Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin said 24 residents of the city were infected and new measures were needed to stop the virus from spreading further.

‘Parents will decide whether their child will keep going to school or remain home,’ Sobyanin wrote on his website.

‘Every family can have different circumstances and kids’ immunity is different.’ He said the measure would remain in place until further notice.

Russian authorities are screening passengers returning home and ordering them to remain in self-isolation for two weeks even if they do not experience any symptoms.

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