Worldview Security Update – October 27, 2020
27-Oct-20

 

AMERICAS

Argentina / Honduras / Paraguay (Security threat levels – 3 / 4 / 3): On 25 October 2020, authorities in Argentina extended quarantine measures for 18 provinces — including the Buenos Aires metropolitan area — and social distancing regulations nationwide until at least 8 November. In the areas under quarantine, residents are prohibited from leaving their homes except to obtain food and medicine or to seek medical care. Meanwhile, mandatory social distancing requirements and restrictions on travel, public and private gatherings and outdoor activities are in place throughout most of the country, and face masks are mandatory at all times in public.

In Honduras, authorities on 26 October extended an existing nationwide curfew until 2300 local time on 1 November (0500 UTC on 2 November). The curfew runs nightly from 2200 to 0500 local time (0400-1100 UTC). Outside of curfew hours, residents may travel to perform essential activities on specific days based on the last digit of their national identity card or passport number. Security personnel continue to enforce the curfew as well as other health-related restrictions, such as the wearing of face masks and social distancing guidelines.

In Paraguay, Silvio Pettirossi International Airport (SGAS/ASU), which serves the capital Asunción, reopened on 26 October and limited international commercial flights have resumed. All foreign national travelers must submit a health declaration form (available here ) within 24 hours of arrival, purchase international medical insurance with COVID-19 coverage for the duration of their stay, and show proof of negative results on a COVID-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours of their travel date. In general, travelers must undergo a 14-day mandatory quarantine either in their place of residence or in a government-approved hotel or isolation facility. However, the quarantine period may be reduced to seven days for travelers who receive a negative result on a COVID-19 test taken on the seventh day of quarantine. Transit passengers or travelers staying fewer than seven days are not required to self-isolate.

United States (Security threat level – 2): On the evening of 26 October 2020, dozens of protesters gathered outside the Philadelphia Police Department’s 18th District building located in West Philadelphia near the intersection of Pine Street and South 55th Street. Protesters threw bottles, stones and launched fireworks at riot police stationed outside the facility. Minor clashes were reported as advancing police officers gradually pushed the crowd back down Pine Street. Several buildings in the area were damaged or vandalized, and anecdotal reports indicate police cruisers and garbage dumpsters were set on fire. At least 33 people were arrested, and dozens suffered minor injuries. One police officer was hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries after being struck by a vehicle. The demonstrators were gathered to protest the police shooting of a Black man armed with a knife earlier in the day in a nearby neighborhood.

United States / Mexico (Security threat levels – 2 / 4): As of 0700 local time (1200 UTC) on 27 October 2020, Tropical Storm Zeta was located approximately 75 km (45 mi) east of Progreso, Mexico, and 865 km (540 mi) south of the mouth of the Mississippi River, and was moving northwest at 22 kph (14 mph), according to the U.S. National Hurricane Center. At that time, Zeta was generating maximum sustained winds of 110 kph, with higher gusts. On its current track, Zeta will cross the southern Gulf of Mexico through 27 October, begin turning to the north-northeast on 28 October as it approaches the central Gulf coast, and make landfall as a hurricane along the southeast Louisiana and southern Mississippi coastline near New Orleans, Louisiana, by the evening or night of 28 October.

The storm is forecast to produce 100-200 mm (4-8 in) of rain, with isolated maximums of up to 305 mm, along the storm’s track across the Cayman Islands and northeast Yucatan Peninsula through 27 October, with 25-75 mm of rain possible over western Cuba. Rainfall totals of between 50-100 mm, with isolated maximums of up to 150 mm, are forecast over portions of Alabama, northern Georgia, eastern Louisiana, southern Mississippi and the mid-Atlantic through 29 October.

The following watches and warnings are in effect: a Hurricane Warning for the area from Morgan City, Louisiana, to the Alabama-Mississippi border, including the New Orleans metropolitan area and lakes Maurepas and Pontchartrain; a Tropical Storm Warning for Cozumel, Mexico, the area from Progreso to Punta Allen in Mexico, and from the Alabama-Mississippi border to Walton County, Florida in the United States; a Tropical Storm Watch from west of Morgan City to Intracoastal City, Louisiana; and a Storm Surge Warning from Intracoastal City to Navarre, Florida, including Mobile, Pensacola and Vermilion bays, as well as lakes Borgne and Pontchartrain.

At approximately 2300 local time on 26 October, Zeta made landfall as a Category 1 hurricane near Ciudad Chemuyil, located approximately 25 km (15 mi) northeast of Tulum, before weakening into a tropical storm as it moved inland. At that time, the storm was generating maximum sustained winds of 80 mph (130 kph) and was tracking toward the northwest at 20 kph. Zeta brought high winds and heavy rainfall that caused localized flash flooding and damaged buildings, trees and power lines. However, no injuries or deaths were reported.

ASIA

Pakistan (Security threat level – 5): On the morning of 27 October 2020, an explosion occurred inside the Jamia Zubairia madrasa in the Zargarabad district of southeast Peshawar. According to anecdotal reporting, an unidentified individual was seen leaving a duffel bag in the main entrance of the building shortly before the blast occurred. Authorities have not confirmed if the blast was the result of an improvised explosive device (IED). At least seven people were killed, and as many as 110 others were injured. Casualty figures may increase as rescue efforts continue. Officials cordoned off the area and launched an investigation into the event.

Vietnam (Security threat level – 3): As of 1600 local time (0900 UTC) on 27 October 2020, Typhoon Molave was located approximately 385 km (240 mi) east of Qui Nhon, Vietnam, and 615 km (380 mi) east-southeast of Da Nang, according to the U.S. Joint Typhoon Warning Center. At that time, the storm was moving west-northwest at 24 kph (15 mph) and was generating maximum sustained winds of 204 kph, with gusts of up to 250 kph. On its current forecast path, the storm is expected to continue this track as it moves across the South China Sea before making landfall in central Vietnam between Binh Dinh and Quang Ngai provinces by 28 October.

EUROPE

Czech Republic (Security threat level – 2): On 26 October 2020, authorities announced a nationwide nightly 2100-0500 local time (2000-0400 UTC) curfew. The curfew will remain in effect from 28 October to 3 November. Under the order, residents may only leave their homes to commute to work, care for vulnerable family members, and to seek medical care or purchase medicine.