Seychelles expands China virus travel ban to South Korea, Italy and Iran
The MERS coronavirus digitally imaged. (US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Flickr) Photo License: CC BY 2.0
(Seychelles News Agency) - In a revised travel advisory issued by the Public Health Authority, no persons from Seychelles apart from returning residents are allowed to travel to China, including the Special Administrative Region (SAR), South Korea, Italy and Iran with immediate effect.
The revision is part of reinforced measures taken by the Public Health Authority to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Community transmission within these countries have been assessed to be significant and therefore they are listed for additional measures.
South Korea, Iran and Italy are the three hotspots outside China. In the latest update on Tuesday, South Korea which has the biggest outbreak outside China has reported 1,146 cases and Iran has 95 cases.
Italy has the highest number of infections outside of Asia.
According to CNN, "Italy has confirmed 322 cases of the virus, the Italian civil protection agency said Tuesday. ... The cases are heavily concentrated in the region of Lombardy where 212 infections have been confirmed. The authorities said Tuesday evening that 11 people have so far died from the virus in the country."
The Public Health Authority said that "local trade partners have been advised to give all visitors from China, including the SAR South Korea, Italy and Iran who were planning to visit the Seychelles in the coming weeks and months, the opportunity to cancel or postpone their holiday at no cost."
All foreign workers who are presently in China, South Korea, Italy and Iran and were planning to return to Seychelles, an archipelago in the western Indian Ocean, are also directed to postpone their return travel until further notice.
Other measures include all airlines with inbound flights to Seychelles not boarding any passengers or crew -- except returning Seychellois nationals and residents -- who have been to China including the SAR, South Korea, Italy and Iran in the last 14 days.
The same applies to people travelling by sea because "any person arriving in Seychelles by sea (except returning Seychellois nationals and residents) will not be allowed to disembark if they have been to China, (including the SAR), South Korea, Italy and Iran in the last 14 days.
Furthermore, any marine vessel will not be allowed to enter Seychelles waters if any passenger on board has been to China, South Korea, Italy and Iran in the last 14 days.
All returning residents who have been to China, including the SAR South Korea, Italy and Iran will be put under obligatory quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.
While the number of cases continues to increase in China, cases are being registered in new countries. To date, there are close to 80,000 confirmed cases in 30 countries but most cases remain in China. Almost a third of all the confirmed cases have recovered so far.