Chile and Bolivia announced Thursday (1st) the closure of their borders – a move that will leave Brazil even more isolated in the region. Bolivian President Luis Arce specifically ordered the “temporary closure of borders with Brazil for seven days” as part of the protective measures.
In Chile, the restriction applies to all countries, including air and land borders, during the month of April. Thus, among the main neighboring countries, only Paraguay maintains open land borders in Brazil.
Brazil has had its worst month since the start of the pandemic, with 66,000 deaths in March. After the United States (552 thousand deaths), it is the one that has recorded the most deaths in total by Covid (321,515), followed by Mexico (203,210).
On Twitter, the Bolivian leader informed that there will be isolation rules in municipalities near the border with Brazil where the circulation of new variants of the coronavirus is detected. “The isolation will be coordinated with autonomous territorial entities, establishing controls to mitigate the virus for as long as necessary,” he wrote. Arce did not say whether the air borders were also closed.
Chile, for its part, has announced that it will close its land and air borders throughout April due to the increase in coronavirus cases in the country, according to a statement from the Under Secretary for crime prevention, Katherine Martorell. The measure comes into force next Monday (5) and is valid for all countries. Until then, travelers could enter if arriving by plane, including those from Brazil, provided they presented a PCR test upon boarding and repeated the exam on Chilean soil.
The country has passed one million cases and recorded 23,328 deaths since the first case, detected on March 3, 2020. “We urgently need an additional effort, because we are at a very critical moment in the pandemic”, a said the country’s spokesperson. government, Jaime Bellolio. Chilean health officials have already detected the presence of the Brazilian and British variants of the coronavirus.
The increase in contagion in Chile is occurring alongside the rapid advance of vaccination, which has already reached 7 million people with at least one dose. To date, 24% of the population has completed the two doses necessary to achieve immunity. In Brazil, only 3.2% received both doses.
Peru and Argentina had already closed borders to travelers from Brazil. In Lima, nearly half of new cases of Covid-19 come from the new variant, P.1, identified for the first time in Manaus, still in 2020. In Argentina, flights from Brazil, Mexico, Chile were suspended last week, in addition to UK and Northern Ireland.