By Euro Weekly News Media • 14 March 2020 • 20:49
This includes British troops and their families who are posted to the UK’s Sovereign Base Areas on the island.
Nearly 6,000 British military personnel and their dependents are based in Cyprus.
Cyprus has 10 confirmed cases of COVID-19.
All non-essential travel, military exercises and large gatherings have been stopped in the Sovereign Base Areas.
A number of people are self-isolating within the bases and are being tested for coronavirus. So far, all results have come back as negative.
Commander British Forces Cyprus, Major General Rob Thomson, told Forces News: “We’ve cancelled exercises which are not essential, we’ve cancelled sporting activities, we’ve cancelled visits. So, that will reduce the numbers of people coming.”
“Where families are coming back from the UK, where there have been children at school or university, they must continue to come because it’s important that families are together as we face this threat.”
“People who need to come back for operationally essential reasons – they will continue to come.”
Major General Thomson said he is meeting with commanders on Monday and that he is “confident” in the measures being taken.
Cyprus is home to the RAF’s busiest operational base, RAF Akrotiri, and Dkhelia Station.
British soldiers are also part of the United Nations peacekeeping mission along the demilitarized buffer zone between the Greek and Turkish sides of the island.
The announcement that UK travellers must self-isolate, regardless of having any symptoms or not, means the UK has been upgraded to a ‘category two’ nation by the Cyprus government.
In contrast, category one nations, such as Italy, are those deemed most at-risk of coronavirus by Cyprus and includes further measures.
Northern Cyprus has banned British nationals from entering.
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