Sunday, December 3, 2023

Govt OKs ‘red’ list of countries with travel restrictions

President Rodrigo Duterte has approved the release of the “red” list of countries where travel restrictions will be implemented, Malacañang announced on Friday.

“President Rodrigo Roa Duterte approved today, Sept. 10, 2021, the imposition of travel restrictions on countries under the Red List,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a press statement.

The countries included in the red list are Azerbaijan, Guadeloupe, Guam, Israel, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Saint Lucia, and Switzerland, Roque said.

He said all passengers who are coming from or who have been to the countries under the red list within 14 days immediately preceding arrival in the Philippines would be prohibited from entering the country beginning noon on September 12 until 11:59 p.m. on September 18 (Manila time).

He, however, said the travel restrictions do not cover returning Filipinos who will fly back to the country through government-initiated or non-government repatriation programs, as well as through special commercial flights allowed under existing resolutions issued by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases.

All passengers who have been to the red-listed countries within 14 days immediately preceding arrival in the Philippines and are arriving before noon on September 12 will be allowed to enter the country, Roque said.

“They, however, shall be required to undergo a 14-day quarantine period,” he said, adding that passengers allowed to enter the country should stay at a quarantine facility in the first 10 days and observe home quarantine in the last four days.

Roque said reverse transcription – polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing must be conducted seven days after their arrival.

“Arriving passengers shall complete a 10-day facility-based quarantine, notwithstanding a negative test result,” he said.

Roque said Filipino or foreign passengers who merely transited through any of the countries included in the red list would not be considered as “having come or having been to the said country, provided they stayed in the airport the whole time and were not cleared for entry by immigration authorities.”

Under RA 11589, local government units are authorized and enjoined to have local equity in the modernization of BFP units stationed in their respective jurisdictions.

The law also allows the Security and Protection Unit to be mobilized and provided with equipment “appropriate for self-defense and the defense of others during exceptional emergencies, especially those related to a disturbance of peace and order where the assistance of the BFP is required or sought”.

The Security and Protection Unit will be equipped with appropriate defensive and civilian-oriented training by the Department of the Interior and Local Government and the Philippine National Police.

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