Cyprus has renewed an obligatory seven-day quarantine for all passengers arriving from the U.K., to prevent the spread of a virulent new strain of coronavirus found recently in Britain.
The health ministry said the order issued on December 21 is extended to January 10.
All arrivals from Great Britain are tested for COVID-19 upon arrival at Larnaca and Paphos airports, after which they transferred, at the taxpayer’s expense, to local hotels where they have to stay for seven day.
On the last day, they are tested again and if the result is negative for SARS-CoV-2 and the new strain VOC 202012/01, they are allowed to leave but remain in home isolation for a further three days.
Exempted from the rule are those aged up to 18, who may remain in the quarantine hotel with their parents or guardians.
This follows the ECDC report issued on December 29 that recommends a quarantine or self isolation of ten days.
For the first time in a while, 150 tests on passengers arriving at Larnaca and Paphos airports on Friday produced no positive results.
Cyprus started the new year with two coronavirus deaths, raising the death toll since the pandemic started to 127, 76 of whom in December alone.
The health ministry said the year ended with a total of 22,651 people infected with SARS-CoV-2 since March, having recorded 632 new cases on the last day of the year.