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The Kiribati Government has officially declared a further extension of its border closures imposed in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Government advises that this extension will remain effective until the end of December, 2020.
Some exceptions have been made for humanitarian flights to transport essential equipment and medical supplies for the Government as it enters the final stages of its preparations for repatriation of nationals.
A cohort of 20 nationals from the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI) will be the first to be repatriated.
The undertaking would be conducted in accordance to Standard Operating Procedures that seek to safeguard the public from the potential entry and transmission of COVID-19. All repatriated nationals would be required to undergo mandatory quarantine at a Government-designated facility on South Tarawa.
It is expected that upon completion of the first cohort’s repatriation and quarantine process, planning to bring back all I-Kiribati stranded overseas will be progressed starting with countries free from COVID-19.
Throughout the repatriation period, Kiribati borders will remain closed to foreign nationals unless specific directions are given to enable critical and lifesaving operations and activities in Kiribati.
During the border closure, the provision of medical supplies and cargoes will continue under the established COVID-19 safety procedures and protocols to ensure necessary support to strengthen the national health system and to support the needs of the people.
The Government continues to appeal to the general public and Kiribati’s development partners for their continued cooperation and understanding to ensure the necessary arrangements are strictly followed so that risks are managed and the health safety of all is not compromised.
SOURCE: KIRIBATI GOVT/PACNEWS
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