Worldview Security Update – July 16, 2020
16-Jul-20

AMERICAS

Chile / Dominican Republic / Panama (Security threat levels – 2 / 3 / 3): On 15 July 2020, the Chilean government extended quarantine measures in place for the Santiago metropolitan area and 25 additional comunas (municipalities) until at least 24 July due to local outbreaks of COVID-19. The extension affects the province of Santiago and the following comunas: Buin, Colina, Lampa, Padre Hurtado, Puente Alto and San Bernardo, as well as portions of Regions I, II, V, VI, and VII. The U.S. Embassy in Santiago maintains information on current restrictions in place throughout Chile, which is available here .

Authorities in the Dominican Republic lifted the nightly curfew as of 16 July, although other coronavirus-related restrictions remain in place. A ban is in effect on recreational, social and economic activities between 2000-0500 local time (0000-0900 UTC). Exemptions are in place for essential businesses, including health and pharmaceutical services, private security, hospitality services, ports and airports. Restaurants may only serve customers between 0600-2000 local time and offer food deliveries until 2100 local time. Protective face masks remain mandatory in public areas.

In Panama, a 24-hour quarantine will be in effect from 1900 local time on 17 July until 0500 local time on 20 July (0000 UTC on 18 July until 1000 UTC on 20 July) in the provinces of Panama and Panama Oeste. In addition, movement in those provinces remain restricted to two hours a day based on their gender and the last digit of their government identification number. Meanwhile in all other provinces, a nightly curfew from 1900 to 0500 local time was enacted in lieu of the permitted daily two-hour movement period. Security checkpoints are in place to ensure compliance with the movement restrictions, and most interprovincial travel remains banned. Face masks are still required in public spaces nationwide.

ASIA

Maldives (Security threat level – 3): On 15 July 2020, the Maldives reopened its borders to foreign travelers and lifted additional entry restrictions for travelers who have visited Bangladesh, mainland China, France, Germany, Italy, Malaysia, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka or the U.K. within 14 days prior to arrival. In addition, foreign tourists will no longer be required to self-quarantine on arrival, although all non-tourist passengers — including Maldivian citizens and residents — are required to self-isolate for 14 days. All travelers and aircraft crew will be required to complete and submit a Traveler Health Declaration form within 24 hours prior to traveling to the Maldives and complete an Immigration Arrival Card on entry. The lifting of restrictions is primarily aimed at foreign tourists in an effort to stimulate the country’s tourism sector.

EUROPE

Europe: On 16 July 2020, French Prime Minister Jean Castex announced that a nationwide mandatory face mask requirement for indoor public spaces will go into effect the week of 19 July rather than 1 August as stated by President Emmanuel Macron on 14 July. Castex stated that the earlier timeline for implementing the measure on 1 August was too late to effectively limit the rising number of COVID-19 cases.

The Russian government has amended entry and quarantine requirements for incoming travelers, effective as of 15 July. All foreign nationals arriving in Russia must provide a medical certificate showing negative results from a RT-PCR COVID-19 test or positive results for coronavirus-specific IgG antibodies. Both tests must have been taken within three days of arrival in Russia. Travelers without medical certificates are required to take a RT-PCR test within three days after entering the country. In addition, the requirement that all travelers self-isolate for 14 days on arrival is no longer in effect. Instead, travelers must self-quarantine if they develop COVID-19 symptoms or test positive for the virus and remain in self-isolation until they receive negative results from a RT-PCR test.
In the northeastern Spanish region of Catalonia, a stay-at-home order went into effect on 15 July for residents of the Lleida area, which is located approximately 180 km (110 mi) west of Barcelona, as the number of local COVID-19 infections continues to increase. Additionally, officials advised residents to restrict gatherings of more than 10 people in three neighborhoods of the Barcelona suburb of L’Hospitalet. To date, officials in Catalonia are addressing local outbreaks by imposing restrictions on specific neighborhoods instead of issuing quarantine measures across the entire region.

MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

Algeria / Israel (Security threat levels – 4 / 3): On 16 July 2020, the Algerian government extended the coronavirus-related nightly curfew, which is currently in effect across 29 provinces. The curfew — which is in place from 2000 to 0500 local time (1900 to 0400 UTC) — will remain in effect until at least 27 July.

In Israel, officials from El Al Airways on 16 July extended the flag carrier’s suspension of scheduled commercial flight operations until at least 31 August. The airline cited the current entry ban for foreign travelers to Israel and the requirement that returning residents undergo a 14-day self-quarantine on entry as the reason for the extension of the flight suspension. The Israeli government is likely to implement additional restrictions in the country, as COVID-19 cases continue to rise. The Health Ministry reported 1,898 new COVID-19 cases on 16 July; a total of 44,500 such cases have been reported in the country, with at least 380 fatalities.


SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA

Sub-Saharan Africa: On 15 July 2020, in the Central African Republic, limited international commercial flight operations resumed at Bangui-M’poko International Airport (FEFF/BGF) with airlines permitted to operate one flight per week until further notice. In addition, all passengers must wear face masks, disinfect their luggage, and comply with sanitary measures during their flight and on arrival into the country. All travelers are subject to infrared temperature screenings upon arrival and will be subject to a mandatory 21-day self-quarantine period. While the government began easing some restrictions on 12 June as part of phase two of the country’s reopening plan , a number of restrictions remain in place, including the compulsory use of face masks when in public and a prohibition on all public gatherings.

In Chad, a nightly curfew remains in place for the capital N’Djamena and the regions of Guera, Kanem, Logone Occidental, Logone Oriental, Mayo Kebbi Est and Mayo Kebbi Ouest until at least 20 July. The curfew was shortened by two hours and now runs from 2200 to 0500 local time (2100 to 0400 UTC). Furthermore, the Chadian government announced plans to reopen N’Djamena International Airport (FTTJ/NDJ) and resume limited commercial flight operations beginning on 1 August. The reopening is subject to the coronavirus-related situation on the ground and may be delayed.

In Guinea, President Alpha Condé extended the existing nationwide state of emergency for an additional 30 days effective 15 July. Additionally, he shortened curfew hours for the Greater Conakry area to 0000-0400 local time/UTC. The use of face masks in public remains mandatory, and gatherings of more than 20 people are still banned. However, Condé also announced that the nation’s air borders will begin a gradual reopening process on 17 July, and stated that the Ministry of Transport and the National Health Security Agency (ANSS) will issue an operational plan related to international commercial air traffic in the coming days.

In Rwanda, the interior minister ordered Nyamasheke and Nyamagabe districts — located in the southwest of the country — back under lockdown for a two-week period beginning on 15 July, citing a rise in the number of COVID-19 cases in those areas. Under the lockdown measures, only essential employees and individuals seeking medical care or food are permitted to leave their homes.

In Senegal, air borders reopened on 15 July and a limited number of international commercial flights have resumed at Blaise Diagne International Airport (GOBD/DSS), which serves the capital Dakar. All travelers must present proof of negative results from a COVID-19 test taken no more than seven days prior to arrival in Senegal. Travelers without the required documentation will be subject to a COVID-19 test at their own expense in Senegal. Conversely, Senegal’s land and sea borders remain closed until further notice. Most restrictions on businesses and movement have been lifted, although residents are required to wear face masks in public spaces or on public or private transportation.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

Armenia (Security threat level – 3): On 16 July 2020, the U.S. Embassy in Yerevan issued a Security Alert that reads in part as follows:

"Location: Tavush Region, Armenia

"Event: The U.S. Embassy in Armenia urges U.S. citizens to avoid travel to the area east of the M4 and M16 highways in Tavush province due to recent violence and heightened tensions along portions of the Armenia-Azerbaijan border. The U.S. Embassy in Armenia has urged all U.S. Embassy employees and their family members to avoid the area to the east of the M4 and M16 Highways north of the Dilijan National Park and up to the international border with Georgia in Tavush province.

"U.S. citizens throughout Armenia are encouraged to avoid public demonstrations and exercise caution in public spaces. The U.S. Embassy encourages U.S. citizens to continue to monitor local news reporting for any new developments. The Embassy will continue to monitor the security situation and provide additional information as needed."

Azerbaijan (Security threat level – 3): On 15 July 2020, the U.S. Embassy in Baku issued a Security Alert regarding recent cross-border clashes between Armenian and Azerbaijani security forces, which reads in part as follows:

“Location: Tovuz and Qazakh Regions, Azerbaijan

“Event: The U.S. Embassy in Azerbaijan urges U.S. citizens to avoid travel to the Tovuz and Qazakh regions due to recent violence and heightened tensions along portions of the Armenia-Azerbaijan border. The U.S. Embassy in Baku has instructed U.S. Embassy employees and their family members to avoid travel to the Tovuz and Qazakh regions. U.S. citizens throughout Azerbaijan are encouraged to avoid public demonstrations and exercise caution in public spaces. The U.S. Embassy encourages U.S. citizens to continue to monitor local news reporting for any new developments. The Embassy will continue to monitor the security situation and provide additional information as needed.”

Bolivia (Security threat level – 3): On 15 July 2020, the U.K. Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) issued updated travel advice for Bolivia, which reads in part as follows:

“From 16 to 19 July, additional measures will apply to La Paz department, including the city of La Paz. You will not be allowed outside unless travelling in a medical emergency or to catch a humanitarian repatriation flight.” 

Lesser Antilles (Security threat level – 1): On 15 July 2020, the U.K. Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) issued updated travel advice for St. Vincent and the Grenadines, which reads in part as follows: 

“There are no lockdowns or curfews. Physical distancing, including at weddings and funerals, is still recommended but rarely enforced. Otherwise, the few restrictions that there were (e.g. numbers of people allowed to travel on private minibus taxi services and certain businesses or shops only allowing a set number of people in at any one time) are loosening. The amplified music ban, which impacted social gatherings, has now been lifted. Some shops or businesses may still require customers to wear face masks, or to wash or sanitize hands before entry, or adhere to 3-6 feet space markings when queuing.”