Published On: Wed, Oct 22nd, 2014

New Ebola travel bans by Suriname and Dominican Republic

SurinamePARAMARIBO, Suriname -- Suriname and the Dominican Republic became the latest countries in the region that will no longer allow entry to foreign travellers if they have previously been to Ebola-hit West African countries.

According to a protocol issued by the Suriname health ministry, travellers other than Surinamese nationals who, one up to 21 days prior to departure to Suriname, have been in one of the risk countries -- Sierra Leone, Guinea or Liberia, are not allowed to begin the journey to Suriname, unless they can prove to be free of the Ebola virus with an internationally recognized health certificate.

For those who have begun their journey to Suriname, a period of monitoring or a maximum of 21 days in quarantine will be conducted on their arrival at the border posts of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) country, said the protocol.

According to the protocol, all passengers arriving in Suriname will be asked to provide detailed relevant information by filling out a form issued by the Health Ministry.

The health ministry also advised Surinamese citizens to avoid traveling to high-risk countries in West Africa.

The Dominican Republic has also joined other Caribbean countries and has issued a travel ban restricting travelers from West African nations affected by Ebola outbreaks.

The ban applies to travellers in those countries in the past 30 days, said health minister Altagracia Guzman on Tuesday. The health minister said authorities will remain vigilant at airports, seaports and at the Haitian border.

There are no direct flights between Suriname or the Dominican Republic and any African country.

Other regional countries have announced similar travel restrictions. Barbados, however, has decided not to impose any restrictions for the time being.

By Caribbean News Now contributor

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