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Sri Lanka ready to expand Covid-19 quarantine, Coronavirus curfews to continue amid exams: Army Chief

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka is ready to expand quarantine facilities as more contacts are traced and curfews will continue as national Advanced Level exams are held, Army Chief Shavendra Silva said.

Up to October 10, 103 new cases came from the Minuwangoda factory cluster and family members are being traced.

He said nearly 10,250 persons were in quarantine at 96 centres run by the military.

“There are questions being raised whether we have more quarantine facilities,” General Silva, who heads Sri Lanka’s anti-Coronavirus task force, said in a video statement.

“We have made ready the infrastructure to house more persons.”

He said tracing of contacts was continuing.

“We have quarantined a majority of the family members of the infected persons,” he said. “All confirmed persons have been hospitalized.”

So far 1186 persons had been confirmed since the first confirmed case at the Brandix factory.

“We have information that all persons confirmed since then have links to the cluster,” General Silva said.

General Silva had pointed out earlier said third level contacts may not really be aware of the link to the factory, but authorities were finding the links.

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Earlier on Sunday General Silva told the media that efforts were also being made to search for the source of the infection, while contacts of already found persons are being traced.

The infection is though to have been present in the factory from September 23, but there was a possibility that it was there as early as September 13 he said.

In addition to the 1,400 workers in the factory, Coronavirus had also spread to third party suppliers.

Education authorities had held a Grade 05 national exam on Sunday and the Advanced Level exam will be held from Monday.

Authorities have cautioned the public in all areas to wear masks, wash hands and avoid non-essential travel.

The elderly in particular have been warned to stay indoors.

Lockdown curfews will continue in area of Gampaha district where it had been imposed.

“We are continuing the curfews in the areas where it has been imposed,” General Silva said. “The reason is that most of the 103 confirmed cases were from the curfew areas.

“After few days after analyzing the situation the government will decide whether to lift the curfew.”

http://www.epid.gov.lk/web/index.php?lang=en

Up to 1000hours on Sunday Sri Lanka had confirmed 4,638 Covid-19 cases with 13 deaths. (Colombo/Oct11/2020)