Worldview Security Update – September 29, 2020
29-Sep-20

AMERICAS

Colombia / Dominican Republic (Security threat levels – 4 / 3): On 28 September 2020, President Iván Duque extended Colombia’s “selective isolation” phase until at least 31 October in an effort to contain the spread of COVID-19. The selective isolation phase emphasizes contact tracing and isolation for those exposed to COVID-19. Restaurants are allowed to operate provided they adhere to occupancy restrictions and public health mandates determined by local authorities. Additionally, the consumption of alcohol in bars and other entertainment venues is prohibited. Face masks remain mandatory in all public spaces.

In the Dominican Republic, on 28 September authorities shortened the hours of the existing nationwide nightly curfew. A curfew is now in place from 2100-0500 local time (0100-0900 UTC) Monday to Friday, and from 1900-0500 local time on Saturday and Sunday. The curfew will remain in place until at least 17 October. The mandated use of face masks in public and private facilities with public access remains in effect.

United States (Security threat level – 2): As of 29 September 2020, nearly 70,000 residents of Northern California’s Napa and Sonoma counties are under evacuation orders as a wildfire complex continues to burn in those counties. The blazes initially broke out overnight on 27-28 September in the Napa-Sonoma region, located approximately 45 mi (70 km) north of San Francisco, , grew into a wildfire complex and spread rapidly in the area. At least 113 structures have been destroyed due to the fire, the majority of which were located in the suburban areas of Sonoma County’s Santa Rosa city. As of last report, the fire has consumed approximately 56 sq. mi (145 sq. km) and was zero percent contained. Meanwhile, another wildfire near the city of Redding, located in Shasta County, has forced 1,200 people to evacuate their residences. The fire has spread over 23 sq. miles, destroying at least 146 structures and remains zero percent contained. There have been at least three fatalities in the county. The governor of California has declared a state of emergency in the three counties due to the growing blazes.

ASIA

Malaysia / Philippines (Security threat levels – 3 / 4): On 28 September 2020, Malaysian authorities in Sarawak state, located on Borneo island, imposed additional entry restrictions for arriving travelers. According to officials, arrivals to the state via Sabah state or the Labuan Federal Territory must complete an online form through enterSarawak, submit to a COVID-19 PCR test upon arrival, and remain subject to a 14-day Home Surveillance Order. In neighboring Sabah state, nonessential businesses in Lahad Datu, Tawau, Kunak and Semporna districts must close for 14 days beginning on 29 September.

In the Philippines, President Rodrigo Duterte extended the general community quarantine (GCQ) in Metro Manila, Batangas, Tacloban City, Bacolod City, Iligan City and Iloilo City through 31 October. Lanao del Sur province will remain under a modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ), while the rest of the country will be under modified general community quarantine (MGCQ).

EUROPE

Armenia / Azerbaijan (Security threat levels – 3 / 3): As of 29 September 2020, fighting between the Armenian and Azerbaijani military forces is ongoing for a third consecutive day in and around the disputed separatist region of Nagorno-Karabakh. Officials in Nagorno-Karabakh stated that 87 of their soldiers have been killed and 120 others have been wounded since the heavy fighting began on 27 September. Armenia’s Foreign Ministry stated that an Armenian civilian was killed during an attack by Azerbaijani forces in the town of Vardenis, located approximately 20 km (12 mi) from Nagorno-Karabakh. Meanwhile, Azerbaijan’s Defense Ministry stated that the Armenian military launched artillery fire into the Dashkesan region of Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev stated that Armenian artillery fire has so far killed 10 Azerbaijani civilians. The latest claims by both parties suggest that the ongoing conflict could be expanding out of the Nagorno-Karabakh region.

SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA

Kenya / Republic of Congo (Security threat levels – 4 / 3): On 28 September 2020, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta extended until 27 November the nationwide nightly curfew authorities had previously enacted in an effort to stem the spread of COVID-19. The curfew — in effect nightly from 2300-0400 local time (0200-0700 UTC) — was due to expire on 29 September before the extension. Additionally, public gatherings, funerals and weddings are now limited to a maximum of 200 people. The limit on such gatherings was previously set to a maximum of 100 people.

In the Republic of Congo, the government extended the nationwide state of health emergency until at least 17 October. The measure, which was previously set to expire on 27 September after being extended several times, allows the government to implement and revise restrictions deemed necessary to combat the spread of COVID-19. The nightly curfew in Brazzaville and Pointe-Noire is now in effect from 2300-0500 local time (2200-0400 UTC), but is no longer in effect in the rest of the country. The use of face masks in public spaces and various social distancing measures remain mandatory. Law enforcement officers have authority to issue fines and arrest individuals for non-compliance with such measures. Currently, airports are open for international flights, although inbound travelers remain subject to coronavirus-related entry requirements.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

Brazil (Security threat level – 3): On 28 September 2020, the U.S. Embassy in Brasilia issued a Health Alert regarding Brazil’s extension of entry restrictions, which reads in part as follows: “Effective September 25, Brazil extended the restrictions on entry of foreigners by land (unless for transit) and sea, through at least October 23. The entry of foreign visitors traveling by air is currently permitted.

“The September 24 decree stipulates that foreign travelers entering Brazil by air, for a short stay of up to 90 days, must present proof of purchase of health insurance, in English, Portuguese, or Spanish, that is valid in Brazil for the entire period of the trip with minimum coverage of 30,000 Brazilian reals [approximately 5,365 U.S. dollars] to an airline agent prior to boarding. Failure to provide proof could result in the denial of aircraft boarding by airline agents or denial of entry to Brazil by Brazilian authorities.”

The full text of the alert is available here .

Guinea (Security threat level – 4): On 28 September 2020, the U.S. Embassy in Conakry issued a Demonstration Alert, which reads in part as follows:

“Location: The announced route includes:

  • Yimbayah Tanerie circle
  • Transversal 1/the Autoroute
  • Route de Donka
  • The People’s Palace

“Event: We have received information that a protest not approved by the Government of Guinea will take place tomorrow, September 29, 2020 at the location(s) above. The protest is scheduled to begin at the Yimbayah Tanerie circle, move down Transversal 1 and the autoroute, and onto Route de Donka in Dixinn. before ending at the People’s Palace in Kaloum. As the protest is not approved, it may diverge significantly from the announced route.

“As always, there is the possibility that sporadic pop up protest activity may occur in Conakry at any time. Typical locations for protest activity often include, but are not limited to, Rue le Prince from the Cosa intersection, to the Bambeto traffic circle, to the Hamdallaye traffic circle. When violence occurs during these protests, it often takes the form of blocked traffic, burned tires in the streets, and rocks and debris thrown at passing vehicles. Traffic in and around areas of the protest will come to a halt.

“The American School of Conakry will be closed on September 29.

“U.S. government personnel will avoid those areas on September 29, 2020.”

Kosovo (Security threat level – 4): On 29 September 2020, the U.K. Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) issued updated travel advice for Kosovo, which reads in part as follows: “All foreign nationals entering Kosovo from countries where the overall risk of Covid-19 is assessed as “high”, according to the official ECDC list , must provide a negative RT-PCR test, no more than 72 hours old, to enter Kosovo. The official ECDC list is updated every two weeks. You should consult the latest ECDC list before travelling.”