Worldview Security Update – June 8, 2020
8-Jun-20

AMERICAS

Chile / Panama (Security threat levels – 2 / 3): On 8 June 2020, Chile’s minister of health announced that due to a local spike in COVID-19 cases the municipalities of San Antonio and Calama, located in the Valparaíso and Antofagasta regions, respectively, will enter quarantine as of 2200 local time on 9 June (0200 UTC on June 10), and will remain so until further notice. The following locations remain under quarantine measures until at least 12 June: the province of Santiago and the adjacent municipalities of Puente Alto, San Bernardo, Padre Hurtado, Buin, Lampa, Colina, as well as the northern municipalities of Iquique and Alto Hospicio.

In Panama, additional social-distancing measures for the provinces of Panama and Panama Oeste went into effect on 8 June. Residents must return to the gender-based movement restrictions previously lifted on 1 June that permit men and women to leave their homes for up to two hours at a time and on different days based on their government identification numbers. Men are permitted to travel for essential goods and services — such as to grocery stores and pharmacies — on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, whereas women are only permitted to travel on Mondays, Wednesday and Fridays. No one may travel outside their homes on Saturdays or Sundays.

United States (Security threat level – 2): On the evening of 7 June 2020, Tropical Storm Cristobal made landfall in southeastern Louisiana near New Orleans, bringing strong winds and heavy rainfall to Louisiana and the southeastern states of Alabama, Mississippi and Florida. Cristobal has since weakened to become a tropical depression. As of the morning of 8 June, more than 20,000 homes and businesses in Louisiana and Mississippi are experiencing power outages. In New Orleans, most businesses remain closed; in addition, City Hall and public libraries are closed on 8 June. In the coastal areas of Mississippi, vehicles stalled as flash floods inundated roadways; officials in the city of Biloxi rescued dozens of motorists attempting to drive through the flooded U.S. 90 highway on 7 June. Additionally, in Florida, a tornado touched down in an area south of Lake City near Interstate 75 and downed trees and utility poles. A section of Interstate 10 in northern Florida was briefly shut down due to flash floods on 7 June. At least two people were killed off the coast of Louisiana on the night of 5 June, when a riptide swept them away.

As of 0700 local time (1200 UTC) on 8 June, Tropical Depression Cristobal was located approximately 50 mi (75 km) south-southeast of Monroe, Louisiana, according to the U.S. National Hurricane Center. At that time, Cristobal was moving to the north-northwest at 10 mph (17 kph) and had maximum sustained winds of 35 mph with higher gusts. Cristobal is projected to continue moving north-northwest across Louisiana through the morning of 8 June and across Arkansas and Missouri during the afternoon and into 9 June. Rainfall of between 5-10 inches (12-25 cm) is forecast across parts of central to eastern Gulf Coast region into the lower Mississippi Valley, with isolated areas expecting maximums of up to 15 inches. In addition, 2-4 inches of rain, with potential maximums of 6 inches, is expected in parts of the mid-to-upper Mississippi Valley and Northern Plains.

At present, storm-generated swells are affecting parts of the northern and eastern Gulf Coast, likely generating hazardous surf and riptide conditions. Tornadoes are possible in the states of Alabama, Mississippi, southeastern areas of Louisiana, eastern Arkansas, western Tennessee and southeastern Missouri during 8-9 June.

ASIA

India / New Zealand / Philippines (Security threat levels – 3 / 1 / 4): As of 8 June 2020, malls, restaurants and houses of worship in the Indian capital New Delhi may reopen as long as they comply with social distancing measures put in place to mitigate the threat of transmitting COVID-19. Hotels, however, will remain closed in case they are needed for conversion into emergency hospitals for COVID-19 patients. Meanwhile, officials in the state of West Bengal — of which Kolkata is the capital — extended coronavirus-related restrictions until 30 June. Additionally, Mizoram state authorities are set to implement a statewide 14-day lockdown beginning on 9 June.

In New Zealand, the government lifted most domestic movement restrictions and transitioned to an “Alert Level 1,” the lowest level of a four-tier scale, at 2359 local time (1159 UTC) on 8 June. However, foreign travelers are banned from entering the country. Further details of “Alert Level 1” requirements can be found here .
In the Philippines, as of 6 June airport authorities began resuming domestic commercial flights at Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport (RPLL/MNL), Mactan-Cebu International Airport (RPVM/CEB) and Clark International Airport (RPLC/CRK). The gradual resumption of domestic flights follows the transition of the areas — in which the airports are located — into less-restrictive General Community Quarantine (GCQ) from Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ), a process which began on 1 June. International commercial flights remain suspended; however, officials anticipate resuming international services as early as 1 July.

EUROPE

Germany (Security threat level – 3): On the afternoon of 6 June 2020, clashes broke out between protesters and riot police near the Alexanderplatz in central Berlin and the Gänsemarkt in northern Hamburg. Protesters threw stones, bottles and other projectiles at police officers, who used pepper spray and water cannons against protesters. In Berlin, at least 28 emergency personnel reportedly suffered injuries and 93 protesters were arrested; there were no reports of injuries or arrests during the clashes in Hamburg. Approximately 15,000 people gathered to protest in Berlin; 20,000 in Munich; 14,000 in Hamburg; and 10,000 in Stuttgart. Large numbers of protesters also gathered in Düsseldorf, Freiburg, Cologne, Hanover, Frankfurt and elsewhere in Germany in solidarity with ongoing protests against racism and police violence in U.S. cities. German officials approved the demonstrations but recommended attendees adhere to social distancing measures.

United Kingdom (Security threat level – 3): On 7 June 2020, tens of thousands of protesters rallied in central London for a second consecutive day to protest police brutality in response to the 25 May killing of an African American man in police custody in the U.S. city of Minneapolis, Minnesota. Protesters gathered outside the U.S. Embassy in the Nine Elms district and marched on the bridge across River Thames toward Parliament and Downing Street. Protesters spray-painted graffiti on a statue of former Prime Minister Winston Churchill in Parliament Square in Westminster and engaged in clashes with police officers. A total of 25 police officers were injured during the confrontations and at least 36 protesters were arrested.

Previously, a large-scale protest in the city center on 6 June was largely peaceful, although concluded with minor confrontations between protesters and police officers near the U.K. prime minister’s residence in Downing Street. At least 14 police officers suffered injuries. Authorities arrested 29 protesters during the course of the day.

MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

Iraq / Libya (Security threat levels – 5 / 5): On 8 June 2020, Iraqi officials extended the countrywide commercial flight ban until at least 13 June in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Repatriation charter flights are exempt from the ban.

In Libya, the Presidential Council of the internationally recognized Government of National Accord (GNA) on 6 June extended the curfew and lockdown in areas under its control until at least 17 June. The nightly curfew remains in effect from 1800 to 0600 local time (1600 to 0400 UTC). Nonessential businesses and places of worship are closed and all public gatherings are prohibited. Residents are required to wear face masks when traveling in public. Nonessential travel between cities remains prohibited.

Lebanon (Security threat level – 4): On the afternoon of 6 June 2020, clashes broke out between protesters and security forces near Martyrs’ Square in downtown Beirut, the capital. Protesters threw stones and other projectiles at security personnel and damaged shops and storefronts, prompting riot police to deploy tear gas in response. Meanwhile, pro-Hizballah demonstrators clashed with other groups of protesters and riot police in the Mazraa neighborhood in southern Beirut. Additional security forces were deployed to the area to restore calm and separate opposing groups of demonstrators. Lebanese military forces briefly sealed off the Mazraa neighborhood following reports of gunfire in the area. At least 48 individuals, including 25 Lebanese soldiers, were injured in the protest-related violence, but there were no reports of fatalities.

SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA

Kenya / Zimbabwe (Security threat levels – 4 / 4): On 6 June 2020, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta extended the nationwide nightly curfew, international flight ban and movement restrictions into and out of the Nairobi Metropolitan area and Mandera and Mombasa counties until at least 7 July in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, movement within these areas is permitted; similar restrictions in Eastleigh, Nairobi; Old Town, Mombasa; and Kwale and Kilifi counties were annulled at 0400 local time (0100 UTC) on 7 June. Additionally, the amended curfew hours are now 2100 to 0400 local time. All bars, restaurants, shopping malls and other public gathering places will remain closed until 7 July, and public gatherings continue to be prohibited.

Meanwhile, the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) suspended electoral activities until further notice, citing health concerns related to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The announcement would allow parliamentary vacancies to be filled by appointment instead of through a by-election. Leaders of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) party denounced the suspension as taking advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic to enable a rival MDC faction to circumvent the electoral process in order to place its own members in the legislature. The announcement follows the forcible occupation of the MDC headquarters by the rival MDC faction the previous day, during which at least five senior MDC leaders were arrested.