Argentina + 6 more

R4V Southern Cone Situation Report - November - December 2020

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Situation

• Uruguay, nine months after recording its first coronavirus case started seeing its “first wave” of infections, threatening to undo the hard-fought gains made throughout the pandemic in terms of preventing the spread of the virus. Uruguay has increased its alert from yellow to orange amid exponential growth in daily cases since November. Uruguay closed all borders, prohibiting access to its territory until 1 February. As of 25 December, Argentina introduced tighter restrictions on travelers entering the country, limiting entry to nationals and residents, imposing strict testing and quarantine restrictions on most of these travelers and suspending the pilot test for tourism from neighbouring countries. In the last week of December 2020, Argentina began COVID-19 vaccinations (with Russian Sputnik V vaccine). Paraguay announced that vaccinations will begin in the second quarter of 2021, based on negotiations with the WHO COVAX initiative.

• Increasing trend of entries of Venezuelan families in Desaguadero, Bolivia, coming from Peru through unauthorized border crossing points continued during November and December, as well as further crossings through the Pisiga - Colchane border, towards Chile, despite land borders remaining closed due to COVID-19 measures.

• In Argentina, the irregular entries through the border between Argentina and Bolivia (La Quiaca-Villazón) continued to rise, while the borders continue to be closed without protection safeguards or the possibility of requesting asylum at the border.

• On 1 November a total of 130 Venezuelans departed from Buenos Aires, Argentina, to Venezuela via an humanitarian flight carried out by the Conviasa airline in the context of the Plan Vuelta a la Patria (Venezuelan government-run plan). On 27 December, some other 120 Venezuelan returned under the same scheme.