Jordan announces sweeping new measures to combat coronavirus

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Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - Jordanian army will guard entry and exit points of cities as government orders residents to stay home

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The National

March 17, 2020

March 17, 2020

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The government of Jordan announced sweeping new measures on Tuesday that amount to a national lockdown, in an attempt to minimise the spread of the coronavirus, known as Covid-19.

The country currently has 35 reported cases, nine of which are foreign nationals.

The government announced a temporary shutdown of the private sector and government institutions, excluding vital departments that will be determined by Prime Minister Omar Razzaz.

As the country's medical sector focuses its resources on coronavirus patients and emergencies, non-essential medical services will be halted.

The country will also restrict movement between governorates, with the army being deployed at the entrances and exits of main cities.

Minister of state for media affairs Amjad Adaileh advised residents not to leave the house except for emergencies. The government also advised against gatherings larger than 10 people.

All forms of public transportation will be suspended. Malls, commercial centres and banks will be shuttered, but ATMs, pharmacies and general supply centres will remain open, this includes bakeries and providers of food, water, fuel and electricity.

Jordan will prepare quarantine sites for anyone returning to the country, but the government urged Jordanians abroad to remain in place and to follow safety measures implemented by their host countries.

The country also said it will stop printing newspapers, stating they contribute to the transmission of infection.

All precautionary measures will be in effect for two weeks, beginning at 8 am on Wednesday morning.

The government has created a website where residents can learn more about the new measures being enacted.

Updated: March 17, 2020 03:20 PM

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