Jordan resumes international flights six months after shutdown

AMMAN: Jordan is resuming regular international flights to and from around 40 countries on Tuesday, almost six months after it suspended all commercial travel due to the coronavirus pandemic.
In mid-March, the government halted all flights as part of a series of lockdown measures to curb the spread of the virus. Authorities planned to reopen Amman’s Queen Alia International Airport for international flights in August, but postponed it several times.
The move comes as the kingdom hopes to stimulate the economy, expected to shrink by 3.4 per cent this year. Strict measures since March left Jordan with significantly lower infection rates compared with its neighbours.
Jordan has registered some 2,478 COVID-19 cases, including 17 deaths. However, as restrictions eased, the number of daily reported cases increased in August.
Passengers entering Jordan must provide negative results of a COVID-19 test carried out 72 hours before travel.
Another obligatory test must be carried out on arrival. The government is dividing a list of around 40 countries into three categories according to the epidemiological situation there.
All passengers will need to isolate for at least five days at home orup to a maximum two weeks depending on where they are coming from. Some of the countries listed are yet to resume international flights, including Saudi Arabia.
Two Syrian refugees at Jordan’s Azraq camp have tested positive for coronavirus, becoming the first confirmed cases to be reported inside a refugee camp in the kingdom, the UN said on Tuesday.
“These are the first confirmed cases of coronavirus inside refugee camps in Jordan,” the United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR) in Jordan said in a statement. — dpa
The positive test results came out on Monday evening, prompting the UN to move the two patients to facilities designated by Jordanian authorities to isolate COVID-19 patients. Other refugees who were in direct contact with them have been tested and isolated inside the camp until the results come back, UNHCR added. The Azraq refugee camp is Jordan’s second largest and home to almost 37,000 refugees. It is located around 100 kilometres east of thecapital Amman. Jordan hosts more than 1.2 million Syrian refugees, including some 650,000 registered with the United Nations. — dpa