ASIA China (Security threat level – 3): On 23 November...
Ecuador (Security threat level – 3): On 22 April 2021, authorities announced a Monday through Thursday nightly curfew from 2000 to 0500 local time (0100-1000 UTC) and total weekend curfews from 2000 local time on Fridays until 0500 local time on Mondays for 16 provinces, effective from 2000 local time on 23 April until 2359 local time on 20 May due to a spike in COVID-19 cases. The provinces affected are Azuay, Carchi, Cotopaxi, Esmereldas, El Oro, Guayas, Imbabura, Loja, Los Rios, Manabi, Santo Domingo de los Tsáchilas, Santa Elena, Sucumbíos, Tungurahua, Zamora Chinchipe and Pichincha – where the capital Quito is located. During the weekday curfew and the weekend lockdown, movement of people and vehicles will be prohibited. Essential workers and people with emergencies, such as those seeking medical attention, will be exempt from the curfew. In addition, the affected provinces’ beaches and spas will be closed to tourists and cantonal public transport will be limited to 50% of maximum occupancy. Intra and inter-provincial transport will be limited to 75% of maximum capacity, and public transportation services will be reduced by 50%. Eateries – except for food courts – will be limited to 50% capacity. Most nonessential businesses along with churches, food courts and funeral homes will be limited to 30% capacity. Meanwhile, social gatherings will be prohibited.
India (Security threat level – 3): On 21 April 2021, the chief minister of Maharashtra state – where Mumbai is located – announced that additional coronavirus-related restrictions will be enforced statewide from 2000 local time (1430 UTC) on 22 April until 0700 local time on 1 May. Under the new orders, along with restrictions imposed on 13 April, inter-district and inter-city travel is banned except for essential purposes, public buses and all modes of private transportation are limited to 50% capacity, offices must operate at 15% capacity, and ceremonies such as weddings are limited to two hours in length, with a maximum of 25 attendees.
Laos (Security threat level – 3): On 22 April 2021, authorities imposed a coronavirus-related lockdown in the capital Vientiane until 5 May. Under the order, Vientiane residents are prohibited from leaving the city, and anyone seeking to enter are required to receive approval from authorities. Shipments of goods are exempt from the order. Residents are also required to remain at home except for essential purposes, such as traveling to purchase groceries and seek medical care or commuting to work. Furthermore, all land borders are closed during the lockdown period. Domestic flights are also reportedly suspended, while international flights are expected to continue.
Pakistan (Security threat level – 5): At approximately 2215 local time (1715 UTC) on 21 April 2021, a suicide bomber detonated a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device in the parking lot of the Serena Hotel in Quetta, the capital of Balochistan province. Authorities stated that at least five people were killed and 12 more suffered injuries and indicated that no guests were harmed. Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has claimed responsibility for the attack, stating that members of the security forces were its intended target. Officials have not confirmed TTP involvement in the attack. Additional reports indicate that the Chinese ambassador to Pakistan was staying at the hotel, but was not present at the time of the attack. Officials have launched an investigation.
Russia (Security threat level – 3): On the evening of 21 April 2021, several thousand demonstrators gathered in cities across Russia to protest the treatment of Russian opposition leader and Putin administration critic Alexei Navalny, who has been in prison since January. Noteworthy demonstrations occurred in the capital Moscow as well as in St. Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, Irkutsk and Vladivostok. Protesters chanted slogans in support of Navalny and against President Vladimir Putin. There were no reports of violence, but there was a significant riot police presence at the demonstrations, and reports indicate as many as 11,000 people were arrested nationwide.
Oman (Security threat level – 2): On 21 April 2021, Omani authorities announced that travelers from India, Pakistan and Bangladesh — or individuals who have transited through those countries in the prior 14 days — will be barred from entering the country effective at 1800 local time (1200 UTC) on 24 April. Authorities are imposing the ban due to increasing COVID-19 infection rates in the aforementioned countries. The ban will be in effect until further notice.
France (Security threat level – 3): On 21 April 2021, the U.K. Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) issued updated travel advice regarding possible demonstrations in Boulogne-sur-Mer, which reads in part as follows: “There are reports of planned direct action to disrupt the flow of UK fish exports at Boulogne port starting the evening of Thursday 22 April and continuing throughout Friday 23 April. We encourage you to plan accordingly. If in the area, please follow advice from local authorities.”
Turkey (Security threat level – 4): On 22 April 2021, the U.S. Embassy in Ankara issued a Health Alert, which reads in part as follows: “On April 21, the Government of Turkey (GoT) announced an extension of this weekend’s COVID-19 curfew restrictions over the National Sovereignty and Children’s Day holiday. The extended weekend curfew will begin today, Thursday, April 22, at 7 PM and continue until 5 AM on Monday, April 26.”