logo
FSM

COVID-hit FSM opens

The Federated States of Micronesia has stuck to its guns about opening its international borders despite a COVID-19 outbreak that is sweeping across the nation and has caused ten deaths so far.

FSM president David Panuelo had announced that they would be opening their borders from August and there is no change to that stand.

So far two states, Pohnpei and Kosrae, are dealing with community transmissions but Chuuk and Yap are yet to report outbreaks.

Mr Panuelo made a public announcement on Saturday reassuring that measures would be put in place to protect citizens where the virus was yet to be detected, but ruled out a full lock down.

The nation is also contending with the mystery as to how the virus made it to the FSM despite international borders being closed.

Wearing of masks in public is mandatory in FSM. The Federated States of Micronesia has stuck to its guns about opening its international borders despite a COVID-19 outbreak. Picture – Bruce E Robert Facebook

At this point in time speculation is that the virus may have come with the contingent that travelled to Fiji to attend the Pacific Islands Forum leaders meeting in July.

The leaders meeting was dubbed a super spreader event, with the nation recording 477 new Covid-19 infections.

MORE STORIES:
Samoa still opening as FSM deals with COVID
Micronesia looking to PIF for climate action

According to reports coming from the islands, there are currently eight people in need of medical care and authorities have confirmed ten deaths.

Mr Panuelo signed a decree on social distancing and other precautionary measures to stop community transmission of the virus which came into effect on Monday.

President of the Federated States of Micronesia David Panuelo. The FSM has stuck to its guns about opening its international borders despite a COVID-19 outbreak. Picture – Fijian Government

People are to stay home unless they are going to work or to buy food and supplies, and wearing face masks in public is mandatory.

All COVID safety protocols including proper hygiene are to be practiced and people are to avoid gathering in large crowds.

Mr Panuelo in his statement said there was no weakness in FSM’s quarantine measure and yet there was spread of the virus in the country.

COVID figures in the FSM. Picture – Office of the President FSM

“What is most important now that the virus is here is that we work together in keeping our country safe from it,” he said in his statement.

“What I ask is that all of us as Micronesians continue to see each other as brothers and sisters and to treat each other with love. We are all in this together.”

For the next three months, the State of Chuuk will allow only limited flights inward to maintain its COVID free status.

For people travelling to Chuuk and into the FSM, the full 14-day quarantine period is required.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

You may also like

Send this to a friend