December 11, 2020
11-Dec-2020

AMERICAS

United States (Security threat level – 2): On 10 December 2020, officials in California’s Sonoma County — where the city of Santa Rosa is located — preemptively adopted the state of California’s regional stay-at-home order to slow the spread of COVID-19, effective as of 0001 local time (0801 UTC) on 12 December and continuing until 2359 local time on 9 January 2021. Nonessential businesses are required to close and gatherings with people outside of immediate households are banned. Retail establishments, such as grocery stores and shopping centers, may remain open and operate at 20% of maximum occupancy. Restaurants and other dining establishments may offer takeout and delivery services only. More information regarding the regional stay-at-home order is available here.

The governor of Delaware announced a stay-at-home advisory, business capacity restrictions and a nightly curfew for restaurants — effective 14 December and continuing until 11 January 2021. Indoor gatherings at businesses or other spaces are limited to 30% of the venue’s capacity or 10 people, whichever is less. Bars and restaurants must suspend operations from 2200-0500 local time (0300-1000 UTC) nightly, and members of only one household may occupy a table at one time during operating hours. Residents are required to wear face masks in all indoor settings when accompanied by anyone outside of their household. The full text of the order can be viewed here.

The governor of Ohio extended the statewide 2200-0500 local time (0300-1000 UTC) nightly curfew until 2 January 2021. During curfew hours, residents must remain in their homes and restrict outdoor travel to essential activities such as procuring food or medicine, traveling to and from work, or seeking emergency medical care. Nonessential businesses remain closed.

In Virginia, the governor issued an executive order implementing tighter restrictions, which are set to be in effect from 14 December through 31 January 2021. The order requires residents to stay indoors from 0000-0500 local time (0500-1000 UTC) nightly, with exemptions for those traveling to and from work, seeking medical attention or procuring food. An expanded mandate to wear face masks will apply for individuals more than 5 years of age in all indoor settings when accompanied by members of separate households and in outdoor settings where adequate physical distancing cannot be maintained. The full text of the executive order, which includes detailed information regarding restrictions currently in place in Virginia, is available here.

ASIA

Singapore / India / Taiwan (Security threat levels – 1 / 3 / 1): On 11 December 2020, authorities in the Indian state of Punjab extended the ongoing 2200-0500 local time (1630-2330 UTC) nightly curfew through 1 January 2021; the order was set to expire on 15 December. Additionally, the state’s chief minister ordered restrictions on public gatherings through 1 January, which prohibits indoor gatherings of more than 100 attendees and outdoor gatherings of more than 250 attendees.

In Singapore, on 11 December officials announced that as of 18 December travelers from Taiwan may apply for an Air Travel Pass. Under the scheme, travelers arriving in Singapore from Taiwan will be subject to a COVID-19 PCR test upon entry. If the test is negative, they will be exempt from quarantine. In order to be eligible for the Air Travel Pass, the traveler must have been in Taiwan for 14 consecutive days before entering Singapore. They must also download the “TraceTogether” app on their mobile device and may not delete the app for at least 14 days after their return to Taiwan. The travelers are also responsible for any coronavirus-related medical expenses incurred during their stay in Singapore.

AUSTRALASIA

Australia (Security threat level – 2): Tropical Cyclone Three made landfall in Western Australia between Port Hedland and Whim Creek at approximately 1100 local time (0300 UTC) on 11 December 2020. While there have been no reports of casualties or significant damage associated with the storm, the Australian Bureau of Meteorology continues to warn of heavy rainfall that could cause flash flooding in parts of the Pilbara region. As of 1700 local time, Tropical Cyclone Three was located approximately 100 km (60 mi) south-southeast of Port Hedland and was moving southeast at 45 kph (28 mph), according to the U.S. Joint Typhoon Warning Center. At that time, the cyclone was generating maximum sustained winds of 65 kph, with gusts of up to 83 kph. The storm is forecast to continue on its current path before dissipating during the early hours of 12 December.

EUROPE

Albania (Security threat level – 3): Protests that broke out in the capital city Tirana on 9 December 2020 in response toa police officer shooting and killing a man for violating the city’s coronavirus-related nightly curfew are expected to continue in the city later on the evening of 11 December. Hundreds of people staged demonstrations for a second consecutive night in Tirana on 10 December, during which demonstrators threw objects at multiple government buildings in the city center area and set fire to trash cans, traffic lights, traffic signs and street light poles. Police officers used tear gas and water cannons to disperse demonstrators and made dozens of arrests. At least two demonstrators and five police officers were injured during the clashes. Earlier on 11 December, a court ruled that authorities should detain the police officer who shot and killed the man. Albania’s interior minister resigned on 10 December following the killing and subsequent protests.

Individuals currently visiting or residing in Tirana should avoid the vicinity of government buildings, particularly areas near the Ministry of Interior, where most of the violence has occurred over the past two days. The likelihood of clashes breaking out between protesters and police officers during the scheduled gatherings later on 11 December remains high.

France (Security threat level – 3): On 10 December 2020, Prime Minister Jean Castex announced that amended coronavirus-related restrictions will go into effect in France from 15 December until further notice. Under the new orders, the ongoing nationwide lockdown will be lifted, and nonessential travel — including interregional travel — may resume. However, a nationwide nightly curfew will be in effect from 2000-0600 local time (1900-0500 UTC), except on 24 December. During curfew hours, residents may only leave their homes for essential reasons, which the government classifies as traveling to or from work, for family or medical issues, for providing emergency aid or walking the pet. Anyone who is outdoors during curfew hours must also complete an attestation form; violators of the curfew order are subject to a fine of 135 euros (nearly 165 U.S. dollars).

Additionally, entertainment venues, such as movie theaters and museums, will be required to remain closed through at least 7 January. Restaurants, bars and gyms will continue to remain closed until at least 20 January. Authorities will reportedly reexamine the country’s epidemiological situation in early January before amending policies further.

Greece (Security threat level – 3): On 11 December 2020, the government announced that the mandatory quarantine requirement imposed to curb the spread of COVID-19 will be reduced to three days from 10 days for travelers arriving in Greece between 18 December and 7 January 2021. Travelers are required to submit a Passenger Locator Form and proof of a negative Covid-19 PCR test result performed up to 72 hours before arrival. An additional rapid COVID-19 test is administered upon entry. Separately, as of 13 December, the ongoing nightly curfew will begin an hour later and remain in effect from 2200-0500 local time (2000-0300 UTC) until 7 January 2021. The government maintains a database outlining protocols for those traveling to and from Greece, which can be viewed here.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

Chile (Security threat level – 2): On 10 December 2020, the U.S. Embassy in Santiago issued a Health Alert regarding changes to city-level quarantine measures, which reads in part as follows:

“As of December 10, the Ministry of Health has confirmed 566,440 cases of COVID-19 in Chile. The government of Chile has implemented measures to limit the spread of COVID-19. The following new measures were announced by the Chilean government on December 10:

  • The imposition of a quarantine for the following comunas (begins Saturday, December 12 at 5:00 am): Los Ángeles (VIII Region), Paillaco (XIV Region), Río Bueno (XIV Region)
  • The upgrading of the following comunas from Phase 1 (Quarantine) to Phase 2 (Transition). This includes the removal of quarantine from Monday-Friday (begins Monday, December 14 at 5:00 am): Futrono (XIV Region), Los Lagos (XIV Region), Puqueldón (X Region)
  • The upgrading of the following comunas from Phase 2 (Transition) to Phase 3 (Preparation). This includes the lifting of quarantine on the weekends and holidays (begins December 14 at 5:00 am): Quillón (XVI Region), Parral (VII Region), Río Negro (X Region)
  • The downgrading of the following comunas from Phase 4 (Initial Opening) to Phase 3 (Initial Preparation). This includes the closure of cinemas and theaters, as well as indoor dining at restaurants (begins Saturday, December 12 at 5:00 am): Combaralá (IV Region), Punitaqui (IV Region), Monte Patria (IV Region), Río Hurtado (IV Region)
  • The downgrading of the following comunas from Phase 3 (Preparation) to Phase 2 (Transition). This includes the reimposition of quarantines on the weekends and holidays (begins Saturday, December 12 at 5:00 am): Ovalle (IV Region), Cabrero (VIII Region), Yumbel (VIII Region), Laja (VIII Region), Tirúa (VIII Region), Penco (VIII Region), San José de la Mariquina (XIV Region)”

France (Security threat level – 3): On 11 December 2020, the U.S. Embassy in Paris issued a Demonstration Alert regarding planned protests on 12 December, which reads in part as follows: “Location: Paris: Chatelet-les Halles to Place de la Republique.

“Event: Potentially violent demonstration expected to take place on Saturday, December 12 beginning at 2:00 p.m. The groups include Stop Islamaphobie, Marche des libertes, and Paris Peuple Révolté. Additional groups known to initiate clashes with police and foment violent disturbances also plan to participate. In case of violence or property damage, French authorities may use chemical agents and water cannons to disperse crowds.

“Additional demonstrations are expected in:

  • Strasbourg, Place de la Republique at 12:30 p.m. Public disturbances are expected.
  • Lyon, Place Lyautey at 2:00 p.m. Public disturbances are possible.
  • Marseille, Vieux Port at 2:00 p.m.
  • Additional demonstrations in other major cities in France may also be planned.”