A high level meeting on Cyprus’ preparedness in the event that the World Health Organisation declares a coronavirus pandemic decided on increased measures at the checkpoints, with more personnel and additional checks.
The meeting, held at the Foreign Ministry, was attended by the Health, Foreign and Justice Ministers and the permanent secretary of the Interior Ministry reviewed the measures already in force.
“We have assessed some additional measures. As a first step we have decided to boost checks at the checkpoints with additional police personnel and with some other restrictions at the checkpoints,” Health Minister Constantinos Ioannou told reporters after the meeting.
“Some other measures relating the checks are being evaluated and we will proceed with additional announcements in the next few days if the need arises,” he added.
Ioannou, who earlier on Wednesday had inspected measures in place at the Ledra Street checkpoint, said the situation was fluid. “There are new developments every hour of the day. We are on alert, we are not complacent, we are evaluating the situation and depending on developments we will taking additional measures,” he said.
The minister would not elaborate on what these additional measures would be.
Asked whether in view of the confirmed coronavirus case in Thessaloniki, authorities were considering checks on travellers from Greece, he said Greece has not been deemed a high risk country and no such checks would apply.
“With just one case, Greece has not been deemed a high risk country. To clarify, it is not us or the officials of the Health Ministry who decide which are high risk countries. It is the World Health Organisation based on the epidemiological situation and therefore the high risk countries are those we announced yesterday and for which we have taken measures at the airports.”
He urged the need for calm and highlighted the role of the media in properly informing the public.