COVID19: 17 new cases in Cyprus as Larnaca football clusters grows

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Cyprus reported 17 new coronavirus cases on Thursday as infections continue to be transmitted among high school students in Larnaca and football players in the same district.

The health ministry said that the total Covid-19 cases in the Republic of Cyprus now stands at 1,772, with 11 patients being treated at the Famagusta General state hospital, four of whom in intensive care. One patient remains intubated at Nicosia General.

Just as on Wednesday, when half of the 12 new cases of SARS-CoV-2 reported on Wednesday were all linked to clusters related to two football clubs in the Larnaca district, the infections continue to haunt the same football clubs – Ethnikos Achnas and Asil Lysis.

Of Thursday’s 17 new cases, five were discovered through the track and trace method, three of whom were linked to Ethnikos players and one is an elementary school pupil.

Five tests were positive, two of whom were Asil players and one is a student in a private high school in Larnaca. The health ministry said that the students had not been to school and was already in self-isolation because he had come into contact with football players from the infected teams.

Four new cases were discovered from the ongoing programme of 3,000 targeted tests in Larnaca, one of whom a high school (lyceum) female student.

Another new case was discovered by another targeted testing programme, this time initiated by the Cyprus Football Association (KOP). The positive result came from a club official at Anagennisi Dherynias, the first case from this football club.

Two more foreign passengers who arrived on Wednesday were tested positive, from among 588 random samples taken from all passengers, regardless if they secured a negative test result for Covid-19 prior to their departure.

Meanwhile, due to the restrictions imposed because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the annual Independence Day parade in the capital Nicosia on Thursday was attended only by invited officials and an empty public crowd.