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Update – 25/05/2020

  • Two new coronavirus cases were reported today by the health ministry, a drop from yesterday’s eight, out of a total of 2128 tests, raising the number to 937, including 12 at the British Bases.One of the new cases were from repatriations (216 tests today) and the other is a teacher at an upper secondary school (417 tests in schools today).Dr Leontios Kostrikis said that experts are troubled by the latest cases from repatriations as well as those in education and urged the public to be more careful during the easing of measures.
  • Member of the committee of experts advising the government on Coronavirus Dr Leontios Kostrikis said on Monday that the crowding observed over the weekend in restaurants and public areas is troubling, philenews reports. Speaking on state radio, Kostrikis reported lack of discipline and overcrowding on Limassol’s coastal avenue, mostly from young people. “If a case is identified in an area that was crowded, it will be impossible to trace. We will not be able to do anything,” he warned and pleaded that the youth adhere to measures noting that “the virus has not left Cyprus and they need to know that. It’s in small clusters but it is among us.” He also clarified that should cases rise to 10 or 15 a day and the epidemiological index edges up above one, then the experts committee will advise the government to roll back on the easing of some measures. “People are behaving as if the virus is gone. It’s not gone, it’s among us,” Kostrikis said. As regards the disabled children exclusion row, he said that the state’s decision was a failure. “This is a big mistake and they are trying to fix it,” he said.
  • Police will step up checks at restaurants and other catering establishments amid fears that distancing and other rules were being broken by customers set on having a good time after several weeks of lockdown. Experts advising the government on the coronavirus outbreak have already voiced concern over crowding and lack of discipline, particularly by young people, at catering establishments and in public areas over the weekend. And government spokesman Kyriakos Koushos said the government was also concerned. He said the Justice Minister has asked the police chief to instruct police officers to be step up their checks while a bill that will impose tough penalties on business owners who break the decrees  is being rushed to parliament. Phanos Leventis, spokesman of the Association of Catering Establishments has appealed to the public to recognise that there are rules in place that must be respected. He expressed concern that the whole sector may be penalised because of the irresponsible behaviour of the few. Speaking to CNA in Monday, the police spokesman said that he too had seen photos and videos of catering establishments over the weekend where measures were not being adhered to.
  • Labour inspectors carried out 363 inspections over the weekend and on Monday, of which 322 were in shops where they found a very satisfactory level of compliance. The 363 inspections included 41 inspections of building sites where there was improved compliance compared to previous days. However some building sites did not have the sanitary or hygiene facilities and three notifications to suspend operation were issued at sites in Nicosia. The inspectors said they will continue their checks and where necessary will issue fines, prosecute or suspend operations. Police checked 529 premises overnight for adherence to measures put in place to curb the spread of Coronavirus, reporting one violation in Larnaca. According to CNA, police are now focusing on businesses as restrictions to movement have been lifted on May 21.
  • With the scrapping of compulsory quarantine for repatriations as of today, the Health Ministry has clarified the new rules for all those who will be returning to Cyprus from today through to June 8. The decision to scrap mandatory quarantine was taken by cabinet last Friday following a proposal by the Health Ministry which cited the favourable epidemiological situation in Cyprus. A factor in the decision was the fact that further than those who had tested positive on arrival, only two of the 7500 in total who had repatriated had exhibited symptoms and tested positive for Covid-19 while in 14 day quarantine. However, in view of the request of a number of people who had arrived in Cyprus under the previous decree, it was decided that those already in quarantine who would normally have left today will be given the option to finish their 14 day quarantine at the hotels stipulated by the deputy ministry of tourism if they so wish. Alternatively, those who have the right conditions to self-isolate at home must on returning home remain in self-isolation pending the completion of the 14 days since their arrival in Cyprus. Those arriving from today through to June 8 will undergo a test on arrival and will be taken to hotel until the result. If the result is positive, they will have the option either to be taken to Eden Resort, Wellness, Rehabilitation Centre or to remain in home isolation — a provision which applies for each coronavirus case detected from all the programmes — and will be monitored by their personal doctor. If the result is negative, they will remain in self-isolation for the duration provided by the protocols. Finally, people deemed by the protocols for tracing to be close contacts of the positive cases, will remain at hotels to be selected by the deputy tourism ministry for an additional two days and will undergo another test to establish whether they have contracted the virus from their contact with the positive case during the repatriation procedure. If they test negative a second time, they will return home and complete the 14 days in self-isolation.

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