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Sep 29, 2020 / 16:09

Vietnam warned of imported coronavirus threat

Illegal immigrants and incoming visitors in international commercial flights pose threats to Vietnam's success in containing the coronavirus.

Imported sources remain the biggest threat to the coronavirus landscape in Vietnam which has succeeded in containing two waves of outbreaks with minimum losses.

 Vietnam urged to tighten control over incoming visitors. Photo: Zing

Unlawful immigrants and migrants who enter the country in legal immigration programs but fail to meet safety requirements are listed as the biggest challenge to Vietnam’s battle against Covid-19, the National Committee on Covid-19 Prevention and Control has warned.

Two other factors that might harm the anti-Covid efforts include risk in the community and goods produced, transported, or imported from affected countries.

Dang Quang Tan, head of the Ministry of Health’s Department of Preventive Medicine, said in the coming time Vietnam might report new infections from affected areas or imported sources at a time when international commercial services are resumed.

For that reason, authorized agencies are asked to tighten control over the flows of visitors from the airport to quarantine facilities as well as the implementation of safety measures.

Accordingly, the Ministry of Health is required to cooperate with internet service providers to introduce apps that help migrants update their health status daily during their quarantine time.

The Ministry of Defense is responsible for running concentrated quarantine centers while the Ministry of Public Security oversees the quarantine at lodging facilities.

Vietnam started resuming international commercial flights earlier this month with the Seoul-Hanoi air route.

in the coming time, the country plans to operate return flights from Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City to several destinations in Japan, South Korea, China, Taiwan, Cambodia, Laos, and Thailand.

Passengers on such flights are Vietnamese nationals, foreign experts and investors. They are required to closely follow all precautionary measures by the Ministry of Health.

In another move, Vietnam’s Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has asked local authorities to be fully alert to the pandemic to protect the country’s success in containing the pandemic.

The resurgence of the coronavirus in Vietnam in late July has left valuable lessons on the control of imported contagion. No official explanation has been given to the return of the virus, but some speculation has linked it to illegal Chinese immigrants.

At that time, Vietnamese police arrested dozens of Chinese nationals who illegally entered or stayed in Vietnam for job or seeking a safe shelter amid the pandemic uncertainty in their country.