Chilean authorities decided Monday not to reopen the borders throughout May to try to prevent the entry into the country of new strains of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, Health Undersecretary Paula Daza announced.
The Government of President Sebastián Piñera had closed all borders throughout April and a decision was expected on whether to renew the measure. Others waited for a partial list of restrictions that did not come.
Daza explained during a press conference that Chileans will not be able to travel abroad except in extraordinary situations and foreigners will not be able to enter the country.
However, other restrictions were to be loosened since in recent days the pandemic indexes have shown some stability and even a slight downward trend.
Thus, in the city of Santiago which is under full quarantine, and starting Thursday ten communes (municipalities) will go to phase two within the government's step by step plan aimed at a future deconfinement.
But gymnasiums and casinos are to remain closed, while shopping malls will be allowed to welcome only one customer for every 10 square meters available, to avoid large gatherings. Schools will offer face-to-face classes but on a voluntary basis.
On the other hand, various regions in the country which had been spared from a full lockdown will go back to phase 1 since the containment of covid-19 cases has not turned out as expected.