Remote Pacific island which had only 2 two cases until now goes into lockdown

WION Web Team
New DelhiUpdated: Jan 22, 2022, 07:48 PM IST
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On Tuesday, the government confirmed that 36 of the 54 passengers had tested positive

The pacific island of Kiribati, which mostly kept the Coronavirus infection at bay, has announced fresh lockdown measures after passengers on the first international flight in 10 months tested positive.

The government detected four new cases from community transmission a day after 36 people on the flight from Fiji tested positive.

Until last week, Kiribati had recorded only two Covid cases.

Kiribati is one of the most isolated islands in the world. It is some 5,000km (3,100 miles) from its nearest continent, North America.

Under the lockdown rules, all essential service providers, including wholesale and retail food providers, will remain open to the public from 6 am to 2 pm.

All government offices have been ordered to closed and the staff have been told to work from home.

This does not apply to essential and emergency services such as hospitals, police, banking, the Kiribati Port Authority, Kiribati Oil Company and gas stations, key government ministries and agencies such as broadcasting.

"The only way that we can fight this virus is through complete vaccination," the office of President Taneti Maamau said on Facebook.

"The public is urged to complete their vaccination doses in order to protect themselves and families."

On Tuesday, the government confirmed that 36 of the 54 passengers had tested positive. In a Facebook post, the government said that all passengers are being monitored by health officials.

All of the passengers on the flight are fully vaccinated, the government said.

However, three members of the quarantine facility's security team have since tested positive. Another person who does not work at the facility has also contracted the virus, the government said.

(With inputs from agencies)