Havana Lifts Quarantine as Cuba Experiments a New “Normal”

Foto: IPS

HAVANA TIMES – The Cuban government on Wednesday said that quarantine measures in the capital Cuba would be lifted and the rest of the country would move the second phase of reopening as the coronavirus outbreak wanes, reports dpa news.

Phase one of reopening will see public transport, services and commerce gradually resuming, Prime Minister Manuel Marrero said in televised comments.

Citizens will have to wear face masks and observe social distancing in public spaces.

In the second phase, the use of masks will be required wherever there is a large number of people in a small space. People with respiratory problems will not be given access to the workplace.

As of Wednesday, Cuba reported a total of 2,348 confirmed cases of Covid-19, 2,218 people have so far recovered while 86 have died.

Cuban authorities are considering the spread of the virus under control.

Marrero said that, aside from Matanzas some 90 kilometres east of Havana, all other 14 provinces will start to move towards phase two of the reopening plan, starting on Friday.

Havana, the capital of 2 million people where the new cases have been concentrated, was the only territory that went into total quarantine.

The announcement came as international tourism to the country was reintroduced though foreign visitors will have to travel on charter flights directly to beach hotels in the north of the country without having contact with the local population.

The Bahamas and the Dominican Republic also reopened their borders on Wednesday, making it possible for tourists to access hotels and beaches in limited numbers and under hygienic safety measures.

Three months of coronavirus restrictions have battered the economy of the Caribbean region, where tourism is a key source of income.

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