News Alerts

13 Mar 2020 | 03:04 AM UTC

Algeria: Flights to Spain and Morocco suspended from March 12 /update 4

Algeria News Alert

Algeria suspends flights to and from Spain and Morocco on March 12 due to COVID-19 outbreak; further restrictions possible

TIMEFRAME expected from 3/12/2020, 12:00 AM until 4/5/2020, 11:59 PM (Africa/Algiers). COUNTRY/REGION Algeria

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Event

Algeria's government announced on Thursday, March 12, that all flights to and from Spain and Morocco will be indefinitely suspended due to the ongoing international coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. According to government officials, the decision was made following consolations with authorities in both countries.

Heightened screening measures at all ports of entry and other containment measures also remain in place as of March 12. President Abdelmadjid Tebboune ordered schools and universities to close from Thursday through Sunday, April 5, to prevent further spread of the outbreak. The government previously implemented a ban on spectators at sporting events and canceled all cultural, political, and social gatherings. It was not immediately clear if ongoing anti-government protests, typically held on Tuesdays and Fridays, would also be banned.

As of Thursday, Algeria has 24 confirmed cases of COVID-19 along with one associated fatality. Further international spread of the virus is expected over the near term.

Context

The first case of COVID-19 was reported on December 31 and the source of the outbreak has been linked to a wet market in Wuhan (Hubei province, China). Human-to-human and patient-to-medical staff transmission of the virus have been confirmed. Many of the associated fatalities have been due to pneumonia caused by the virus.

Cases of the virus have been confirmed in numerous countries and territories worldwide. Virus-screening and quarantining measures are being implemented at airports worldwide, as well as extensive travel restrictions. On March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the global outbreak a pandemic.

Pneumonia symptoms include dry cough, chest pain, fever, and labored breathing. Pneumonia can be contagious and can be transmitted from human to human. The influenza virus, or the flu, is a common cause of viral pneumonia.

Advice

Measures adopted by local authorities evolve quickly and are usually effective immediately. Depending on the evolution of the outbreak in other countries, authorities are likely to modify, at very short notice, the list of countries whose travelers are subject to border control measures or entry restrictions upon their arrival to the territory in question. It is advised to postpone nonessential travel due to the risk that travelers may be refused entry or be subject to quarantine upon their arrival or during their stay.

To reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission, travelers are advised to abide by the following measures:

  • Frequently clean hands by applying an alcohol-based hand rub or washing with soap and water.
  • When coughing and sneezing, cover mouth and nose with a flexed elbow or tissue; if used, throw the tissue away immediately and wash hands.
  • If experiencing a fever, cough, difficulty breathing, or any other symptoms suggestive of respiratory illness, including pneumonia, call emergency services before going to the doctor or hospital to prevent the potential spread of the disease.

 

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