On Saturday afternoon, Prime Minister Hassan Diab asked the security forces to enforce stricter measures to keep the Lebanese people at home as the confirmed cases of Coronavirus reached 248.
This came as a consequence of many in Lebanon ignoring these past days the must of social distancing and self-quarantine, as requested by the government to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
PM Diab called on the Army, the Internal Security Force, the General Security, and the State Security “to prepare and immediately implement additional plans to ensure that citizens stay at home unless for urgent matters, and to ban gatherings.”
The plans include Army patrols and checkpoints on the roads to enforce commitment to the taken necessary measures. Furthermore, the prime minister called on the Lebanese people to observe a self-imposed curfew.
Just a few hours after PM Diab’s message, the Lebanese Army announced on their social media accounts that they began taking the measures to ensure the quarantine.
In Hamra, soldiers were walking across the streets, addressing the people with loudspeakers to stay indoors for their own safety.
Meanwhile in Tripoli, the army has set barriers at the entrances to the port city, amid strict measures.
The streets of Tripoli and the port appeared empty, which confirms the citizens’ commitment to respect the quarantine measures.
For their message to reach everyone, and to monitor the enforced curfew, the army helicopters have been flying over the cities, asking people to stay home.
Moreover, local police in cities and villages have been issuing warnings to those not abiding by the home quarantine rule. There have been also raids on businesses ignoring the orders.
The police are also imposing penalties on shop owners in opened shops for defying the clear commands to close down.
The warnings reached the Palestinian refugee camps, which closed their entry and exit points. “We are worried about the lack of medical facilities to treat the disease,” an official at Ain Al-Hilweh told Arab News.
The outbreak in Lebanon has reached the dangerous level of spread, as announced earlier by the government. These new strict measures by the authorities to impose quarantine have materialized of utmost importance for the safety of the people.
The Lebanese are urged to deal with this critical phase with a strong sense of responsibility and even patriotism.
They all and each have a main role to play in saving the country by simply staying at home, practicing social distancing, and implementing the personal preventive measures.
Their own safety and that of their families and surrounding are at stake.
Be safe. Be responsible.
The World Health Organization has released a set of symptoms that you should watch out for. If you or anyone you know has these symptoms please contact the following health resources.
Get the latest news and updates about the coronavirus outbreak in Lebanon along with a live monitor of cases in Lebanon as well as resources and information to help you guide the outbreak on our dedicated coronavirus page.