AMERICAS Ecuador (Security threat level – 3): On 21 January...
Bermuda / Paraguay (Security threat levels – 1 / 3): Bermuda’s parks, beaches and golf courses reopened on 4 May 2020, in the first phase of a four-part plan to ease coronavirus-related restrictions. Shelter-in-place orders ended on 2 May, allowing businesses to reopen from 0700 to 1900 local time (1000 to 2200 UTC) for curbside pickup or home delivery only. A nightly curfew remains in effect from 2000 to 0600 local time, and all gatherings of more than 10 people are banned. Authorities have yet to offer details regarding a full timeline of the plan, but stated that they will consider the rate of new COVID-19 infections before proceeding to each phase. Phase 2 will allow customers to enter businesses; Phase 3 will allow schools and public transportation to resume, and will also end the mandate that businesses allow employees to work remotely; and Phase 4 is will allow spas, dine-in restaurants, clubs and bars to reopen. However, authorities have not announced when L.F. Wade International Airport (TXKF/BDA) will fully reopen.
In Paraguay, authorities on 4 May relaxed some quarantine measures, and allowed factories, small businesses, civil and delivery services to resume operations as long as they comply with health and safety requirements, including mandatory social distancing and the wearing of face masks in public. The Paraguayan government will evaluate the success of the measure in three weeks before moving ahead with the second phase of reopening the economy.
China (Security threat level – 3): On 5 May 2020, authorities in Hong Kong announced that they will lift some coronavirus-related restrictions on public gatherings and nonessential businesses on 8 May; current social distancing measures are scheduled to expire on 7 May. Gatherings of up to eight people will be allowed, and nonessential businesses — such as bars, gyms, movie theaters, beauty salons and massage parlors — will be allowed to reopen as long as they adhere to social distancing measures such as frequent cleaning and requiring employees and customers to wear face masks. Additionally, restaurants are required to continue spacing tables at least 1.5 m (5 ft) apart. The government also plans to distribute approximately 30 million disposable and reusable face masks to residents across the city beginning in June.
Romania (Security threat level – 2): On 4 May 2020, President Klaus Iohannis announced that the country’s coronavirus-related state of emergency will not extend past 15 May. Measures that will expire include a countrywide nightly curfew, electronic monitoring of those in self-isolation or quarantine, and a complete ban on residents age 65 or older from leaving their homes. Other coronavirus-related measures, such as the restriction of foreigners entering Romania and the ban on gatherings, remain in effect until further notice.
Lebanon / Oman (Security threat levels – 4 / 2): On 5 May 2020, Lebanese officials extended the country’s partial lockdown until at least 24 May due to concerns over a possible second wave of COVID-19 infections. Officials will reconvene and reassess the situation on 24 May before issuing any new orders.
In Oman, officials extended the lockdown of Muscat province until at least 2200 local time (1700 UTC) on 29 May. Additionally, authorities ordered all private and public educational institutions in the country to end the academic year on 7 May.
Niger / Uganda (Security threat levels – 5 / 4): On 4 May 2020, authorities in Niger extended the suspension of all international commercial flights through at least 23 May due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, all ground movements into and out of the capital Niamey are prohibited through 23 May, and all land border crossings are closed until further notice, except for cargo and emergency transportation. A nationwide nightly curfew also remains in effect indefinitely from 2100-0500 local time (2000-0400 UTC).
In Uganda, officials began easing nationwide lockdown measures on 4 May. A number of nonessential businesses — including hardware shops, wholesalers, mechanic services and repair workshops, metal and wood workshops and insurance providers — resumed operations. Restrictions on public transportation and private vehicles will not be lifted until 18 May. Employees of reopening businesses are allowed to travel to work on foot, bicycle or a company bus.
Somalia (Security threat level – 5): On the afternoon of 4 May 2020, an Embraer EMB 120 cargo aircraft operated by Kenya-based African Express Airways crashed near Bardale Airstrip, located in Somalia’s Bay region, approximately 210 km (130 mi) northwest of the capital Mogadishu. All six individuals on board the aircraft — two Kenyan and four Somali nationals – were killed. The aircraft was transporting a shipment of medical supplies to Bardale from Mogadishu at the time of the crash.
Analyst Comment: Kenyan and Somali officials are investigating the circumstances of the crash. Several local Somali media outlets reported that at least one rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) — presumably fired by Ethiopian military forces stationed in the region — struck the aircraft. Al-Shabab militants actively operate throughout Somalia, and are capable of targeting aircraft with RPGs, mortars and small arms fire; however, members of the multinational African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) largely control the area surrounding Bardale Airstrip.
“…Air France is offering limited repatriation flights from Cotonou to Paris with priority for French and EU nationals. These flights may have capacity for individuals who wish to return to the United States, provided the passenger is also able to secure an immediate onward flight from Paris to a destination in the United States. Those interested in learning more about this potential opportunity should contact Air France directly at +229 98 45 48 48, or 51 33 85 21.
“There are no other known commercial flight options to depart Benin at this time. Passengers whose flights were previously cancelled should contact their airline directly for information about rebooking options. U.S. citizens in Benin should prepare to shelter in place until flights resume.
“U.S. Embassy Cotonou has reduced operations to emergency services only until further notice. U.S. citizens with emergencies, including passport emergencies, should contact American Citizen Services at [email protected], or call +229 21 36 75 00 and press 0 to speak to an operator.”
The full text of the alert is available here .
“Event: Changes to Comunas in Quarantine Announced – Recoleta, Cerrillos, Quilicura, Mejillones and Antofagasta begin quarantine Tuesday, May 5
“The government of Chile has implemented measures to limit the spread of COVID-19. A quarantine is in effect for the following neighborhoods (comunas) in Santiago, with the following details:
"… While under quarantine, people are allowed to obtain a permit to leave their residences only under certain circumstances, including for medical reasons, accessing public services (including pension payments) and paying bills for basic services. American citizens can obtain a permit by visiting the Comisaría Virtual or by going to the local police station."
The entire U.S. Embassy alert is available here .
“There are limited seats available on a special repatriation flight to the United States on May 8.
“The repatriation flight will take place on Friday, May 8. Logistical information will be provided as soon as we receive the information. The repatriation flight is operated by the U.S. government and passengers will be required to reimburse the U.S. government for the cost of the repatriation flight. While we do not yet have an estimate, a ticket on the April 8 repatriation flight was estimated at ,897 for adults and ,206 per child. A fee of $257 is required for infants.
“Due to the limited seating available, all third country nationals will be listed as standby and will only be allowed to board if space is available after all U.S. citizens have been checked into the flight. Currently, there is no space available for third country nationals. “
The full text of the Alert is available here .
Kenya (Security threat level – 4): On 5 May 2020, the U.K. Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) issued updated travel advice regarding a commercial repatriation flight, which reads in part as follows:
“Following discussions between the British High Commission, the Government of Kenya and international airlines, Kenya Airways plan to operate a direct commercial flight from Nairobi to London Heathrow on 14 May, subject to demand.
“How to book
“To secure your seat from Nairobi to London use the link .
“You will need to pay for your return travel to the UK. If you cannot afford the travel costs and have exhausted all other options for getting funds , you may be eligible to apply for an emergency loan from the government. This is a last resort option and you would need to repay the loan when you are back in the UK. For more information, contact the British High Commission via webform .
“Medical certificate requirements
“The Government of Kenya and Kenya Airways require passengers and crew on this flight to produce a medical certificate confirming they are free of COVID-19. The cost of a COVID-19 test will be included in the ticket price.
“Once you have paid for your flight, you should book a test at any Lancet Laboratories branch . Results should take 24 hours and will be shared with you and Kenya Airways. Test results must be from within 72 hours of check-in.
“Any passengers testing positive will not be allowed to travel and will receive a refund of their airfare minus the cost of the test. Anyone testing positive must follow Ministry of Health instructions.”