Crackdown in Philippines after surge in coronavirus infections

Passengers arrive to Manila airport; Philippines; Coronavirus infections
Passengers wear masks as they arrive at Manila’s international airport in the Philippines

The Philippine capital placed two villages and two hotels on lockdown and police have renewed warnings against kissing and other “public display of affection” after a new surge in coronavirus infections.

Manila’s mayor Isko Moreno said police would not allow people to go in and out of their houses and the two hotels during the three-day lockdown and violators would be forced into 14-day quarantine.

Isolated residents would be given food boxes, and medical workers and other authorised personnel would be exempt.

Other cities in the capital reimposed lockdowns in several neighbourhoods and longer night curfews after detecting new infections.

National police chief Debold Sinas said a ban on “public display of affection” like holding hands and kissing would be strictly enforced again due to infection spikes.

Violators would be reprimanded, he said.

Authorities have blamed public complacency a year into the pandemic for the surge in Covid-19 cases, specifically in metropolitan Manila.

The Department of Health has reported more than 603,000 Covid-19 cases, with 12,545 deaths.

The totals are the second highest in Southeast Asia after Indonesia.

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