Health officials went on high alert over the weekend after two contacts, who tested positive for the coronavirus, were linked to a traveler who landed in the Republic of Cyprus more than two weeks ago.
According to local media, two employees at a company in Limassol tested positive on Saturday after the management had instructed them to give samples. The tests were requested after the two individuals had come in contact with another employee, who flew from the United States on June 20 via a low-risk European country.
The traveler, described as a foreign national on a work visa, got a connection flight in Greece and landed at Larnaca International Airport through a low-risk category, which does not require a health certificate prior to boarding the flight.
But local reports said he later developed symptoms and got tested at Limassol General Hospital, with results showing on June 29 he had contracted the virus while another contact also tested positive the following day.
'We have to stop it at the first stage before it can move onto the second and create a chain of infection'
Petros Karayiannis, a microbiology professor on the government’s coronavirus task force, was quoted in local media saying there was no reason for the Limassol business to shut down, citing the fact that there was no customer service being carried out at the company.
But the expert, who was quoted in online Reporter, also clarified that the chain of infection was now being considered a local matter.
“We have to stop it at the first stage before it can move onto the second and create an infection chain,” Karayiannis said.
State officials in the Republic of Cyprus also announced two more coronavirus cases over the weekend, a football player and another individual who will remain at a rehabilitation centre before possibly being moved to Pournara migrant camp in rural Nicosia.
According to state officials, the total number of known confirmed cases reached 1003 in the Republic of Cyprus.
Experts said there was no reason for panic but urged the public to remain vigilant and keep applying social distancing measures.