Current events

Oh, it’s apocalyptic

Apocalyptic– *repeat repeat

Hello all, I’m finally back! This past week has been an eventful one in world history and for myself

As the world is slowly going to a crawl, there was no way to to avoid this topic without being personally affected by it. This week, I will be talking about the current events of COVID-19 in Cyprus. Currently, there are some countries that are suffering right now because of the spread of COVID-19.

This was not the case for Cyprus. For the longest time, Cyprus didn’t have any cases. However, two weeks ago, Cyprus had their first case. After this initial case, the current number, as of making this entry, is around 60.

For some novice individuals, you might say that 60 isn’t that bad. Yet, after talking with locals, there is alot of fear going around. This fear steams for the fact that Cyprus is a small isolated island with at most a sub par healthcare system. In a event, of a localized epidemic, there is no way that Cyprus can handle it. Hence, that’s the reason you might hear of a recent hashtag going around called #flattenthecurve. The curve in this case, is the measurement of confirm cases and recovered cases.

As a means of flattening the curve, the Cypriot government took immediate action. You may be asking what immediate action? The government implemented draconian measures. The first measures was to reduce public gathering by up to 75 people. This measure was passed two weeks ago and as a result, huge public gathering were either close or some business were trying to find loopholes. One loophole was to make said public gathering not indoors, but outdoor. Therefore, there were a lot of coffee shops that were open with people hanging outside. Not long after this measure, the president of Cyprus made a televised decreed. This decreed called for the temporary ban of all foreign nationals to Cyprus for up to 15 days. The only exceptions for people to come back were that they were Cypriot nationals, healthcare workers, current students, and others. Yet, they must have a medical certificate confirming that they don’t have COVID-19. Additionally, as of writing this, the Cypriot effectively ban all flights from March 21st for up to 2 weeks

Here is a picture of Ledra Street as of March 12th. One of the most busiest streets in Nicosia

During this unprecedented time, my home university, UNIC, close down indefinitely. With this closure, they made the slow transition to online classes. As of March 18, I have officially started my first online classes

In addition to this decreed, the Parliament of Cyprus passed additional measures. These new measures, as of March 17th, effectively force the closure of all shops and business for up til April 7th. The only exceptions were they were either a bakery or a supermarket.

Besides the events in the Republic of Cyprus, in Northern Cyprus they took unprecedented action to stem COVID-19. They force the closure of schools for now, local business, ban flights, and both the Republic of Cyprus and Northern Cyprus have closed their borders with one another. Initially, with this closure, there was some backlash, yet as the severity of the virus became more wide known, this movement became quiet.

Here is a picture of the border between the Republic of Cyprus and Northern Cyprus

Couple with events outside of Cyprus, made study abroad students had to make a difficult decision to either stay or go back home. I was one of those to make that faithful decision.

Here is a grouping of study abroad students that I know discussing our immediate plans.

In transit, I saw many people wearing masks and even some of them wore full hazmat suits. Once in the States, I was surprised of how little officials here in the US care about the situation. They was no such thing as a COVID-19 test when I left the plane, but I was required to self-quarantine for the next 14 days. Also, they’re some business throughout California are still open.

Here is a couple of us leaving on the same flight. Left to right: your favorite blogger, Mckenzie, and Selma
Here is a picture of passenger going from London to San Francisco. After the recent ban on the United Kingdom and Ireland, there was alot of confusion. On this flight, only American nationals were allow to enter. As a result, most of the people you see here are American passport holders. I remember taking this image and I recall saying that this is similar to Noah’s Ark.
Here is a picture after departing from the plane. Health officials ask us some questions and afterwards we left for are final destination.

Anyways, this entry was not suppose to be fear mongering or an opinion piece, but rather what I have observe over the past few weeks. The observations came from my own perception, to reading the local news, to hearing from my local Cypriot friends. Til next time.

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