HAVANA, Dec. 28th (DT) Cuba decided to limit the entry of travellers from the United States, Mexico, Panama, the Dominican Republic,
the Bahamas and Haiti as of January 1, to stop the current COVID-19 outbreak, the Public Health Ministry (Minsap) reported today.
The institution pointed out in an official statement that the decision to “reduce the entry of travellers” from these countries was taken “having into account (…) the current national, regional and international epidemiological situation,” and that it will apply even to Cuban citizens and residents.
The Public Health Ministry highlighted the increase in imported cases of COVID-19 registered with the arrival of international flights, which represented 71.5% of the total infections detected in recent weeks.
According to the entity, most of these cases are associated with Cuban citizens who arrived from these countries.
More than two million Cubans reside outside the country, mainly in the United States, where there are more than a million migrants, many of whom travel to the island to spend the end-of-the-year holidays with their families.
“The Cuban Civil Aeronautics authorities will readjust the necessary details with the airlines. As soon as the epidemiological situation allows it, the frequency of flights will be gradually restored,” said Minsap, without specifying whether the reduction of travellers will be in terms of quantity of passengers or flights.
Last week Cuba established a mandatory requirement for all international travellers, as of January 10, to have a negative COVID-19 test (PCR test) taken 72 hours before departure.
Cuba reported 217 cases of the new coronavirus last Thursday, including 101 imported, “the highest number of infections since the beginning of the epidemic” in March, as reported on that date by the official newspaper Granma.
At the end of Saturday, the neighbouring island, with 11.2 million inhabitants, reported 11,205 cases and 142 deaths.