Press Release

Worldview Security Update – October 7, 2020
October 7, 2020

AMERICAS

Mexico (Security threat level – 4): As of 0700 local time (1200 UTC) on 6 October 2020, Hurricane Delta was located approximately 55 km (35 mi) west of the city of Cancún, according to the U.S. National Hurricane Center. At that time, Delta had maximum sustained winds of 165 kph (105 mph), with higher gusts, and was moving northwest at 28 kph. Hurricane Delta made landfall near the town of Puerto Morelos as a Category 2 storm at approximately 0530 local time. At least 35% of residences in Cancún are experiencing power outages.

Delta is expected to move to the southern Gulf of Mexico in a west-northwestward motion later on 6 October and approach the U.S. Gulf coastline on 9 October. Cancún International Airport (MMUN/CUN) is closed, and operations at Cozumel International Airport (MMCZ/CZM) and Chetumal International Airport (MMCM/CTM) are currently suspended due to the storm.

A Hurricane Warning is currently in effect for Mexico that spans from the city of Tulum to the municipality of Dzilam de Bravo, including the island of Cozumel. A Tropical Storm Warning has been issued for the Cuban province of Pinar del Río, and in Mexico from the city of Punta Herrero to the city of Tulum, as well as from the municipality of Dzilam de Bravo to the city of Progreso. The storm is expected to produce 100-150 mm (4-6 in) of rain, with localized rainfall exceeding maximums across the northern Yucatán Peninsula, which may lead to significant flooding. A storm surge of 3-4 m (8-12 ft) is expected along the Yucatán Peninsula in areas included in the Hurricane Warning. During 7-10 October, Hurricane Delta is forecast to produce heavy rainfall across the central Gulf Coast and the southeastern United States.

ASIA

China / Nepal / Malaysia (Security threat levels – 3 / 3 / 3): On 6 October 2020, the Hong Kong government extended social distancing orders through 15 October due to increasing rates of COVID-19 infection and the inability of authorities to conduct contact-tracing. Under the restrictions, which had been scheduled to expire on 8 October, public gatherings are limited to four attendees, face masks are mandatory in all public spaces, and bars and restaurants must close nightly by 0000 local time (1600 UTC). Social distancing orders are likely to be extended beyond 15 October if case numbers continue to rise.

On 6 October authorities in Nepal announced new requirements for public transportation providers that will also apply to private transportation entrepreneurs. Each transport vehicle must possess at least two thermal guns for measuring the body temperature of passengers and workers, provide hand sanitizer for passengers, and ensure proper social distancing. Vehicles are limited to 50% capacity, and authorities will provide COVID-19 PCR tests free of charge to drivers and their assistants who show symptoms of COVID-19. Taxis may carry a maximum of two individuals plus one child, who must be 5 years of age or younger. Drivers and their assistants are required to wear face masks, visors and gloves. Drivers and assistants must also disinfect their vehicles on a daily basis. Travelers should be aware that taxis are now allowed to charge 50% above the normal prescribed fare due to capacity restrictions. Authorities urge residents not to take public transportation unless absolutely necessary.

In Malaysia, authorities announced that interstate travel between Sabah and all other states will be banned during 12-25 October due to increasing COVID-19 infection rates in Sabah. Officials initially stated that the restrictions would be in effect during 7-20 October. Exemptions will be in place for emergency travel, deaths and essential services. Travelers seeking an exception must apply for a permit with the police department. Individuals allowed to travel must take a COVID-19 test upon arrival.

Japan (Security threat level – 1): As of 0900 UTC on 7 October 2020, Tropical Storm Chan-Hom has strengthened into a typhoon, located approximately 700 km (435 mi) east of Kadena, Japan, according to the U.S. Joint Typhoon Warning Center. At that time, the typhoon was moving northwest at 20 kph (13 mph) and generating maximum sustained winds of 120 kph, with gusts of up to 148 kph. Chan-Hom is forecast to continue on its current path before shifting northeast by 9 October and returning to the Pacific Ocean. The storm is currently not predicted to make landfall. However, authorities are warning of possible strong winds and high tides in parts of Kyushu and Okinawa due to their close proximity to Chan-Hom’s path.

EUROPE

Italy (Security threat level – 3): On 6 October 2020, the Council of Ministers approved an extension of the existing state of emergency until 31 January 2021. The state of emergency allows the government to continue to adapt measures aimed at curbing the spread of COVID-19 in Italy. Additionally, the Council of Ministers mandated that face masks be worn in all public locations — including outdoors — until 15 October, at which time the mandate will be adapted and possibly extended.

MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

Jordan (Security threat level – 3): On 6 October 2020, officials announced that they will impose a nationwide curfew from 2359 local time (2059 UTC) on 8 October until 2359 local time on 10 October in order to slow the spread of COVID-19 in the country. The military will deploy to enforce the curfew. Public schools will also be closed beginning 9 October.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

Czech Republic (Security threat level – 2): On 6 October 2020, the U.S. Embassy in Prague issued a Health Alert regarding COVID-19 precautions across the Czech Republic, which reads in part as follows:

"Beginning October 5, 2020 a State of Emergency will take effect restricting free movement and limiting the number of persons who gather. Indoor events are restricted to 10 participants with outdoor events being restricted to 20. Masks are required on ALL form of public transport, in all indoor premises (except place of residence) to include schools and health facilities, shops and shopping centers, government buildings, etc., and at all outdoor events if the number of participants exceeds 100 people in Prague, Central Bohemia and Zlin regions. Most commercial establishments are open for business, subject to hygiene and social distancing requirements, though all bars and clubs in the Czech Republic will now be required to close from 10pm until 6am. In addition, all universities and high schools in Prague will move to distance learning. For specific information about the restrictions and all public health requirements in English, please visit the Czech Ministry of Health website.

"Embassy Services: While the U.S. Embassy in Prague has resumed limited services, we are restricting the number of people who come into the embassy due to the ongoing pandemic and daily rise in COVID cases while prioritizing passport and Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA) cases. For an appointment, please visit our website https://cz.usembassy.gov/u-s-citizen-services/passports/ . We will resume full American Citizen Services as soon as possible but are unable to provide a specific date at this time. Notarial services have been suspended at this time. If you believe your need for a notarial service is an emergency, please contact us at ACSPRG@state.gov to inquire about an emergency appointment."

The full text of the alert is available here .

Kyrgyzstan (Security threat level – 4): On 6 October 2020, the U.S. Embassy in Bishkek issued an update regarding ongoing demonstrations and instructed its personnel in Kyrgyzstan to shelter in place until further notice. The alert reads in part as follows: “Demonstrations protesting the October 4 election results continue to take place in Bishkek and several other cities in Kyrgyzstan. Protests are no longer limited to Bishkek. There have been reports of protestors clashing with police, injuries to protestors and police, and one reported death. U.S. Embassy staff have been instructed to shelter in place until further notice.”

United Arab Emirates (Security threat level – 2): On 6 October 2020, the U.K. Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) issued an update to its travel advice for the United Arab Emirates, which reads in part as follows: "On 2 October the Dubai Media Office announced that Emiratis, residents and tourists travelling overseas from Dubai are only required to undergo a COVID-19 PCR test prior to departure if their destination country requires a pre-travel negative test certificate. It is not a requirement for travellers to the UK to undergo a COVID-19 PCR test prior to arrival in the UK."