Philippine President Imposes Travel Limits, Quarantines

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In this photo provided by the Office of Senator Bong Go, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte undergoes testing for COVID-19 at the Malacanang Palace, Manila, Philippine officials say Duterte is being tested for the new virus after meeting with Cabinet officials who were exposed to infected people. For most people, the new coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms. For some it can cause more severe illness. (Office of Senator Bong Go via AP)

MANILA, Philippines (AP) — The Philippine president has suspended domestic travel to and from the Manila area for a month and authorized sweeping quarantines in the region to fight the new coronavirus.

President Rodrigo Duterte also banned large gatherings in the metropolis, suspended most government work and extended the suspension of classes by a month in new restrictions announced Thursday in a nationwide TV address.

He warned that violators and officials who refuse to enforce the restrictions would face possible imprisonment.

“This is not martial law. It’s not even something extraordinary,” Duterte said, stressing that the restrictions are only aimed at fighting the virus.

Health officials have confirmed 52 cases of the virus, and two people, a Chinese and a Filipino, have died.


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