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The Indonesian government decided Friday to ban the public from leaving urban areas for their hometowns during the Eid al-Fitr Islamic holiday in May to reduce the risks of coronavirus transmission.

Muhadjir Effendy, coordinating minister for human development and culture, told a press conference that the ban will be imposed on all from May 6 to 17.

Muhadjir said past experience has shown that the number of confirmed coronavirus cases always increased following a long holiday.

Ordinarily, many Indonesians hit the road or fly a few days before the holiday, which marks the end of the Ramadan month of fasting and this year falls on May 13 and 14.

Last year, the government imposed such a ban on civil servants, military personnel, police officers and workers at state-owned enterprises, but only advised others not to go back to their hometowns.

A mosque in Jakarta is closed in April 2020 ahead of the Ramadan month of fasting to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus. (Kyodo)