On Monday, May 11, Cyprus' Transport Ministry extended the country's ban on all inbound and outbound flights for another two weeks until Thursday, May 28, as part of efforts to prevent further spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). The flight ban was initially imposed alongside lockdown measures on Saturday, March 21. It is possible the suspension may be further extended, with authorities stating that airports may reopen on Wednesday, June 9, depending on the spread of COVID-19. Only cargo flights, empty planes arriving to repatriate foreign nationals on the island, and emergency and humanitarian flights are exempt from the ban. Individuals who are authorized to enter Cyprus will need to submit a medical certificate from a doctor in the country of origin to prove that they do not have COVID-19 and will undergo a mandatory 14-day quarantine at accommodation facilities provided by the government.
Cyprus began easing COVID-19 restrictions on Monday, May 4. Some businesses, including construction companies and retail stores, were allowed to open. However, malls and large stores must remain closed. Individuals are also allowed to leave their homes up to three times a day. Churches are permitted to resume services on May 4 but will be limited to ten people until Monday, June 1, when full congregations can gather, as long as hygiene rules are being followed.
An overnight curfew from 21:00 to 06:00 (local time) remains in place until Thursday, May 21. Other movement restrictions will also be lifted on May 21, and sports teams will be able to resume practicing together. Public beaches, museums, libraries, and archaeological sites will also be allowed to reopen on June 1.
As of May 11, 901 cases of COVID-19 and 65 fatalities have been confirmed in the country. Further international spread of the virus is expected in the near term.
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 trouble 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.
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 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.
Copyright and Disclaimer