Cyprus

Coronavirus: People Arriving In Cyprus From UK Told To Self-Isolate For Two Weeks

There are 10 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Cyprus which is home to two British Sovereign Base Areas.

All people travelling from the UK to Cyprus will have to self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival, amid concerns over coronavirus.

This includes British troops and their families who are posted to the UK's Sovereign Base Areas on the island.

The measures come into effect on 14 March, meaning any UK nationals who arrive before this date will not be affected.

Anyone due to leave Cyprus before the end of the two-week self-isolation period will be able to do so, providing no symptoms of coronavirus are shown.

Nearly 6,000 British military personnel and their dependents are based in Cyprus.

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.

WATCH: Essential military operations in Cyprus 'will continue'.

Cyprus has 10 confirmed cases of COVID-19.

It is home to the RAF's busiest operational base, RAF Akrotiri, and Dkhelia Station, which in total cover 98 square miles. 

British soldiers are also part of the United Nations peacekeeping mission along the 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.

The UK was briefly upgraded to category two on Wednesday, before being dropped back down to category three.

Category one nations, such as Italy and South Korea, are those deemed most at-risk of coronavirus by Cyprus and includes further measures.

WATCH: Plans for tackling coronavirus on Cyprus bases working 'really well'.

Group Captain Sonia Phythian, Commander Medical British Forces Cyprus, said: "Even if you haven’t travelled to any of the high-risk areas which we know such as Italy, but develop flu-like symptoms such as a raised temperature or a cough, then please self isolate for seven days.

"Stay at home, don’t be alarmed, telephone the medical centre, a healthcare professional will give you advice."

Northern Cyprus has banned British nationals from entering.

Cover Image: Library picture of an RAF Voyager landing at RAF Akrotiri (Picture: MOD).