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Jordan Warns against Easing Virus Restrictions

Jordan Warns against Easing Virus Restrictions

Sunday, 12 July, 2020 - 05:45
Jordanian expatriates return to the country. (Petra news agency)
Amman - Mohammed Khair al-Rawashdeh

For the fifth consecutive day, Jordan announced that it had not reported any new COVID-19 cases among residents. It registered three among expatriates, bringing the total caseload to 1,176 since the outbreak of the pandemic.

According to a statement by the government and the Ministry of Health, the three new cases include two Jordanian citizens, who have recently returned from Saudi Arabia and were residing at quarantine-designated hotels, and a Jordanian truck driver, who was tested at the Al-Omari border crossing.

It said five patients have recovered and were discharged from Prince Hamzah Hospital, and a total of 5,808 lab tests were carried out, bringing the total to 460,383.

However, the Health Ministry warned that the danger of the pandemic is still present, calling on everyone to adhere to preventive measures, wear masks, practice social distancing and use the app to alert users if they were in contact with an infected person, and contribute to detecting virus-related cases.

The government had previously said that in case no new COVID-19 cases are registered among residents for 10 consecutive days, it would lift the daily night curfew.

However, National Committee for Epidemics spokesman, Nazir Obeidat warned against easing restrictions.

The registration of cases among expatriates is still a challenge the government is facing in its hasty efforts to ease restrictions, he told Asharq Al-Awsat.

Jordan allowed the return of 20,000 expatriates in three stages during the last two months.

“A lax approach in dealing with the pandemic would again allow the spread of the virus in the country,” Obeidat warned.

Health Minister Saad Jaber said Saturday that a laboratory would open soon at the Queen Alia Airport to allow around 6,000 PCR tests per day.

Jordan's airports will reopen at the end of July, allowing tourists from a limited list of countries to visit the kingdom.

Asharq Al-Awsat noticed Jordanians flaunting preventive measures in public places, restaurants and shops. The government had warned that violators of the measures would be fined.

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