Ministry: Tourists without symptoms can return home from quarantine areas ({{contentCtrl.commentsTotal}})

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs building in Tallinn.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs building in Tallinn. Source: Siim Lõvi/ERR

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is advising Estonian citizens without symptoms of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) to return home from quarantine areas imposed in Italy, including the Lombardy region and the provinces of Parma, Piacenza, Rimini, Reggio Emilia, Modena, Pesaro and Urbino, Venice, Padua, Treviso, Alessandria, Verbano-Cusio-Ossola, Novara, Vercelli, and Asti.

Quarantine zones must be exited through designated checkpoints, however tourists are being permitted to exit the zones in order to return home, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a press release on Sunday night.

"However, we recommend assessing your condition and that of your family, which means that if you have a fever above 37.5 degrees Celsius, you should remain at home or at your place of accommodation and call emergency services for treatment," the ministry said. "Those who have left the risk area must remain in quarantine for 14 days and monitor their body temperature."

Like in Estonia, the emergency services number in Italy is 112.

The ministry is asking that anyone remaining in a quarantine zone follow the instructions of local authorities. Additional restrictions may be placed on movement within zones, with only essential errands allowed, such as for medical assistance, shopping for essentials and going to the pharmacy.

Currently, trains and flights entering quarantine zones in Italy are operating according to their regular schedules. When leaving the zone, however, passengers must present returning to their permanent place of residence or homeland as just cause for leaving a zone.

Estonian citizens who are having trouble returning home are advised to contact Estonia's 24-hour consular assistance emergency helpline at +372 53 01 9999. The ministry also advises citizens to contact their travel agents and airlines.

Minister of Foreign Affairs Urmas Reinsalu (Isamaa) wrote on social media on Sunday strongly advising Estonian residents to avoid travel to Italy altogether.

"In light of news of a quarantine having been imposed in Northern Italy, I would like to emphasize that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs recommends against traveling to ANYWHERE in Italy!" Reinsalu wrote. "Please, do not go to Italy."

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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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