Press Release

Worldview Security Update – October 5, 2020
October 5, 2020

AMERICAS

Bahamas / Honduras / Lesser Antilles (Security threat levels – 2 / 4 / 1): On 2 October 2020, authorities in the Bahamas extended the public state of emergency until at least through 31 October. Under the order, a number of restrictions on businesses, movement and public gatherings remain in place. The islands of Abaco, Grand Bahama and New Providence — where the capital Nassau is located — are under a nightly curfew from 2200 to 0500 local time (0200-0900 UTC) in addition to multiple restrictions on business operations and transportation, as well as face mask and social distancing requirements. Additional information from the government is available here .

In Honduras, authorities on 4 October extended an existing nationwide curfew until at least 2300 local time on 11 October (0500 UTC on 12 October). The curfew runs nightly from 2000 to 0600 local time. Outside of curfew hours, residents may travel to perform essential activities on specific days based on the last digit of their national identity card or passport number. Security personnel continue to enforce the curfew as well as other health requirements, such as the wearing of face masks and adherence to social distancing guidelines.

In St. Kitts and Nevis, authorities announced on 2 October that the country’s borders will reopen to foreign travelers on 31 October. The borders of St. Kitts and Nevis have been closed since 25 March. Travelers arriving from Caribbean countries inside the CARICOM Travel Bubble — Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, Saint Lucia and St. Vincent and the Grenadines — will be required to present negative results from a COVID-19 RT-PCR test taken within 72 hours of arrival. Travelers from countries outside of the travel bubble will be screened for symptoms of COVID-19 at the airport and required to quarantine for 14 days in government-approved accommodations.

Cuba / Jamaica / Lesser Antilles (Security threat levels – 2 / 3 / 1): As of 0800 local time (1200 UTC) on 5 October 2020, Tropical Storm Delta was located approximately 210 km (130 mi) south of the city of Negril, Jamaica, and about 440 km southeast of Grand Cayman Island, according to the U.S. National Hurricane Center. At that time, Delta was generating maximum sustained winds of 65 kph (40 mph) with higher gusts and moving in a west-northwesterly direction at approximately 15 kph. Tropical Storm Delta is forecast to continue in a west-northwesterly direction on 5 October, passing near or over Grand Cayman Island. The storm is then projected to approach Cuba’s Isle of Youth and mainland Cuba on 6 October before moving into the southeastern Gulf of Mexico during the evening of 6-7 October, curving in a northwestward motion.
At present, a Hurricane Watch is in effect for the Cuban provinces of Artemisa and Pinar del Río, as well as the Isle of Youth. A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for the Cayman Islands, while a Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for the Cuban province of La Habana. A storm surge of 1-2 m (3-5 ft) is projected to affect Cuba’s Isle of Youth and the western parts of mainland Cuba. Delta is forecast to produce 75-150 mm (3-5 in) of rain throughout Jamaica and western Cuba, with isolated maximums of 100 mm, and 50-100 mm across the Cayman Islands. The heavy rain could cause flash floods and mudslides in the aforementioned areas.

Mexico (Security threat level – 4): As of 0700 local time (1200 UTC) on 5 October 2020, Tropical Storm Gamma was located approximately 270 km (170 mi) east-northeast of the city of Progreso, Mexico, and nearly 240 km north-northwest of the city of Cozumel, according to the U.S. National Hurricane Center. At that time, the storm was moving south-southwest at 4 kph (2 mph) and was generating maximum sustained winds of 75 kph, with higher gusts. On its current forecast track, Gamma is expected to turn toward the southwest later on 5 October, with the potential to move inland over the northwest coast of the Yucatán Peninsula overnight on 6-7 October.

Tropical Storm Gamma made landfall near the city of Tulum on 4 September, with maximum sustained winds of 112 kph (70 mph). Gamma brought heavy rains, flooding and landslides to the states of Chiapas, Tabasco, Quintana Roo and Yucatán, impacting approximately 600,000 people. The storm caused six fatalities: in Chiapas state, four people died after a landslide buried their home. In Tabasco state, heavy rains and flooding forced the evacuation of more than 3,400 residents to 61 government shelters; two people drowned in the floodwaters. The storm damaged approximately 11,500 homes, three bridges and 150 roads. More than 41,000 tourists were visiting Quintana Roo state as Gamma made landfall.

Gamma is forecast to produce 3-6 inches (75-150 mm) of rainfall accumulations, with isolated maximums of 8 inches, across portions of the Mexican states of Campeche, Tabasco and Yucatan through the middle of the week. Localized flash flooding is possible along coastal areas in the storm’s track. A Tropical Storm Warning is in place for north of the city of Cancún to the municipality of Dzilam de Bravo and a Tropical Storm Watch is in place for the area from Dzilam de Bravo to the city of Campeche.

AUSTRALASIA

New Zealand / South Korea (Security threat levels – 1 / 2): Beginning at 2359 local time (1059 UTC) on 7 October 2020, the city of Auckland, New Zealand, will transition to COVID-19 Alert Level 1, the lowest level on a four-tier scale, after authorities announced the city’s outbreak cluster had been effectively eliminated. As of that date, the entirety of New Zealand will be under Level 1 with almost all restrictions on businesses, movement and public gatherings lifted. Additional details are available here .

On 5 October authorities in Seoul, South Korea’s capital, extended a citywide ban on public gatherings of more than 10 people until at least midnight on 11 October. Authorities extended the ban to discourage large crowds during the upcoming Hangeul Day — a national holiday commemorating the advent of the Korean alphabet — on 9 October. According to health officials, at least 52 gatherings of more than 10 people are scheduled in Seoul. Separately, on 3 October large rallies failed to materialize in observance of the National Foundation Day holiday as authorities set up checkpoints around Gwanghwamun Plaza in northwestern Seoul and passenger rail services did not serve several stations.

EUROPE

France / Italy / United Kingdom / Ireland (Security threat levels – 3 / 3 / 3 / 2): During the evening hours of 3 October 2020, Storm Alex brought strong winds and heavy rains to the Alpes-Maritimes and Piedmont regions of France and Italy, damaging roads, buildings and bridges and causing power outages for thousands of residents in the region. French authorities reported rainfall accumulations of up to 500 mm (20 in) in a 24-hour period, while areas in Sambughetto — in the Piedmont — recorded 630 mm, resulting in significant flash flooding that swept away homes and vehicles and forced thousands of people to move to higher ground. At least two people were killed, and an unspecified number of people were injured by the flooding. Overnight on 3-4 October, the storm approached southern coastal areas of England and parts of southeast Ireland and is expected to pass over much of England throughout 5 October. Weather authorities in both countries have issued yellow rain and wind advisories until midnight on 5 October in anticipation of between 25 and 40 mm of rainfall and winds of up to 100 kph (60 mph).

MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

Israel (Security threat level – 3): On 3 October 2020, thousands of anti-government protesters gathered in Tel Aviv and elsewhere across the country and staged demonstrations calling for the resignation of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The nationwide protests have been ongoing for 15 consecutive weeks, defying a recent law banning protesters from gathering more than 1 km (0.5 mi) from their homes due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While most of the gatherings were small and peaceful, at least 15 demonstrators were arrested following sporadic confrontations with riot police in Tel Aviv.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

Azerbaijan (Security threat level – 3): On 4 October 2020, the U.K. Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) issued updated travel advice for Azerbaijan, which reads in part as follows: “There are reports of significant shelling going beyond these limits resulting in deaths and injuries to civilians and damage to civilian infrastructure. These include Ganja, Terter, Agdam, Naftalan, Beylagan and others. You should take extra care if you are in the Azerbaijani regions around Nagorno-Karabakh. The de-facto authorities in Nagorno-Karabakh have stipulated that they are prepared to target Azerbaijani military sites throughout the country. You should avoid the areas around military bases and installations. The current military situation is fast-moving and subject to change. Follow local news regularly for latest updates.”

Haiti (Security threat level – 4): On 2 October 2020, the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince issued a Security Alert regarding upcoming protests, which reads in part as follows: "On Thursday, September 24, 2020, a group of peaceful protestors spontaneously demonstrated in front of the Embassy’s main entrance. There are reports that the same group has called for additional protests at the Embassy on October 5-6, 2020. While it is unknown if these protests will materialize, please be aware that peaceful demonstrations can often turn violent at a moment’s notice."

Sri Lanka (Security threat level – 4): On 4 October 2020, the U.K. Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) issued updated travel advice for Sri Lanka regarding a suspected COVID-19 infection in the Divulapitiya and Minuwangoda areas, which reads in part as follows: “The police have issued a local curfew in the Divulapitiya, Minuwangoda and Veyangoda areas in response to reports of a positive COVID-19 case in the community. You should follow the advice of local authorities.

“Social distancing instructions remain in force everywhere. The police say anyone breaking social distancing or failing to wear a face mask in public will be subject to mandatory 14-day quarantine."

Tunisia (Security threat level – 3): On 5 October 2020, the U.K. Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) issued an update to its travel advice for Tunisia, which reads in part as follows: "Tunisian authorities have implemented localised lockdowns in response to the detection of infection clusters. From 1 October, local authorities have imposed a night curfew in Sousse for 14 days, which will be in place from 8pm to 5am. A similar 14-day curfew has been announced in Monastir, from 1 October, from 8pm to 6am."