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Saturday (October 31) – CHAN CHAN – The ancient site of Chan Chan is not open after months of being closed due to the COVID19 pandemic.
The director of the Chan Chan Archaeological Special Project Jhon Juarez reported that all measures have been taken to strictly comply with the biosecurity protocols established by the Ministry of Health (Minsa).
“We are very happy to allow the resumption of visits to Chan Chan, after almost seven months of being closed. We have made great efforts so that tourists have a comfortable and safe visit, following the protocols established by health authorities and the Ministry of Culture,” he said.
Juarez reported that a total of 169 people have booked their visits via email or by calling (+51) 943-152-564 from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (local time).
The Chan Chan Site Museum will open on November 12.
Juarez said that the walled Nik An complex will be open on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Admission is free thru November 15.
Saturday (October 31) – Huánuco – People who participate in Halloween and Día de la Canción Criolla (All Saints’ Day) parties will be fined and arrested for transgressing sanitary measures before COVID-19, warned the Huánuco crime prevention prosecutor, Rocío Castro.
The prosecutor announced that they will intensify the operations this weekend in coordination with the National Police, the Health sector and the municipalities of the province of Huánuco, to avoid crowds and the spread of the new coronavirus.
Castro explained that while parents can take their children for walks near their homes, they cannot expose them to the COVID-19 infection by taking them to crowded places to trick or treat.
“We urge parents not to take their children out, so that they do not become victims of the infection,” he said.
The manager of the Public Charity Society of Huánuco, José Valdez, reported that the general cemetery Augusto Figueroa Villamil will remain closed on November 1 and 2, to avoid crowds on All Saints’ Day.
He recalled that last year they received more than 7,000 thousand people between the 2 days, in view of the fear that this will be repeated in the middle of the pandemic and that contagion will increase, they decided not to open the doors of the cemetary.
For his part, the Deputy Director of Health, Cesar Torres, indicated that they notified the formal private cemeteries to do the same. He reminded that although the contagion curve continues to decrease, we must not lower our guard against COVID-19.
[NOTE: Most of, if not all, of Peru’s law enforcement, will be following these same general policies.]
Saturday (October 31) – IQUITOS – Six dredges, used for illegal mining, in the Nanay River basins, in the province of Loretana de Maynas, were destroyed during an operation called “Tahuampa del Nanay II” by the Specialized Environmental Prosecutor’s Office of Loreto.
The intervention was carried out with the participation of the Peruvian Navy, the Regional Directorate of Energy and Mines, the Regional Environmental Authority and the head of the Allpahuayo Mishana National Reserve – SERNANP.
The operation was carried out in the creeks near the communities of Pica Urco, San Juan de Ungurahual and Diamante Azul.
Within the dredges they found suction motors, divers’ suits and diving accessories, hoses, carpets and oxygen tanks. Agents also found items that may help identify the owners of the dredges or heads of these illegal mining criminal organizations. Items such as cell phones, written documents and agendas were seized.
The rest was incinerated by order of the Public Ministry.
The inhabitants of the Nanay River basins denounced the existence of around 100 illegal dredges in the area, according to representatives of the Water Defense Committee. So far in 2020, only 14 of this equipment has been destroyed in operations carried out by FEMA-Loreto.
Saturday (October 31) – Machu Picchu – Machu Picchu reopens tomorrow and in Cusco the authorities are fine-tuning the protocols and action plans in order to ensure a respectful visit and in compliance with all the anti COVID-19 protocols, which will prevent the tourist reactivation from becoming a focus of infection for locals and visitors.
The Police they have announced a joint operation that will come into effect tomorrow when a special group of agents will be moved to Machu Picchu to reinforce the security inside and outside the old Inca city.
Colonel PNP, Alejandro Castillo, head of the Cusco Police Region, told Diario Correo that the officers will work on enforcing the biosecurity protocols, while guaranteeing a safe and trouble-free trip through the activated tourist corridors.
“We have reassigned a new vehicle to Machu Picchu to support the tasks that will be performed there, we are also sending eight more troops to provide permanent security within the citadel, they, added to the three who already work in the area, will assist all travelers who tour the world wonder,” he said.
He mentioned that the sanctions for those visitors who do not comply with the regulations in force in the midst of the state of health emergency will be quite strong and that they [the police] will be very strict when it comes to enforcing the law.
Castillo said that, for example, that if a tourist does not respect the social distancing or the obligatory use of a mask, he runs the risk of being removed from Machu Picchu, and could be fined for violating national regulations and even be taken to the sector’s police station. “There is a whole protocol since the tourists leave Cusco to Ollantaytambo and then to Machu Picchu, and the police will enforce it.”
Friday (October 30) – LIMA – RPP Noticias reports that the Minister of Justice and Human Rights, Ana Neyra, informed that starting next November 15, the churches will be able to carry out masses and other rites, such as baptisms, as long as they comply with all health safety protocols.
“We have pointed out that there will be two stages in this process. As of November 2, they will be able to open the temples and places of worship for prayer and other sacraments. As of November 15, religious rites such as masses, baptisms and others will be able to be carried out, as long as they comply with all the protocols and sanitary measures,” she said in Canal N.
According to the Government’s disposition in a supreme decree published a few days ago, religious entities will be able to open their temples and places of worship to receive their members, the faithful and the public in general, from Monday, November 2,
The document specifies that for the opening of the temples, a capacity of no more than one third of their total capacity must be respected and they must adopt and comply with the protocols issued by the national health authority, in addition to the exceptional measures that are especially relevant for the religious entity.
It adds that during this stage only exceptional rites and religious practices of special relevance to the religious entity may be officiated.
Thus, baptisms, marriages, funeral services of persons whose death is not related to the COVID-19 or suspected of being so, confirmations, first communions, among others, may be performed according to the practices of each religious entity.
With respect to the celebration of masses, worship and similar events that are regular and not exceptional, the rule, published in the extraordinary edition of the newspaper El Peruano, states that they can be given with a minimum capacity.
“The celebration of such rites and exceptional religious practices must be carried out with the minimum number of participants possible and in accordance with the norms of the health authority and the measures of the state of national emergency,” she said.
Previously, in statements to RPP Noticias, the Minister of the Interior, César Gentille, said that the same protocols will be applied for the entrance to the temples as in the shopping centers, while within the precinct the distance between the pews must be respected, whether they are family or friends.
The minister also said that they have met with representatives of the Church to agree on details such as delivering the host in the hand and not in the mouth at the time of the Eucharist, as well as eliminating the use of holy water during the mass.
FRIDAY (OCTOBER 30) – MACHU PICCHU – La Republica reported that Marc Pietrobon and his friend Steven Alexander Matthews are two Canadian citizens whose story may resemble that of many tourists who, due to the pandemic, were left wanting to see Machu Picchu; however, the foreigners decided to stay in Cusco to do some social work during the difficult times.
Pietrobon, 34 years old, who encouraged himself to talk to the press, works in an oil company and, together with his partner, is about to return to his country, so he asks the authorities to provide them with the facilities to know the world wonder, which will reopen its doors on the first day of November.
“We arrived in Cusco on March 16 from Puno, only to receive the news that the country was going to be closed due to the pandemic. Our hopes of getting to know Machu Picchu, the main reason for our trip, were shattered,” explained the foreigner.
Both tourists made many friends in Cusco, especially in the Lucrepata neighborhood, where they have been residing for more than 200 days. The neighbors, seeing the situation of the foreigners, made the requests to the authorities of the Ministry of Culture and Dircetur so they could have the opportunity to know the Inca citadel.
“We are witnesses of the great help they gave to many people during the quarantine. They also supported the animalist associations. We believe that they do not deserve to leave without knowing Machu Picchu. We only ask that they be given the facilities, as they did with a Japanese citizen,” said a local resident.
Marc adopted a little dog that he named Dora. Before that, he was in charge of another puppy that he rescued from the streets, but unfortunately she died. Now, the tourist plans to take Dora to his native Vancouver, where he will give her up for adoption. “Because of my job, I cannot take care of her, I just want to make sure she will be well cared for in my country,” he explained with the help of a translator.
Marc and Steven will leave the country next Wednesday, November 4, and hope that the authorities will respond to the request sent.
Friday (October 30) – PUERTO MALDONADO – Diario Correo reports that Dr. Mario Paredes, director of the Santa Rosa Hospital in Puerto Maldonado (Madre de Dios), says that dengue and COVID-19 can be combined in a dangerous mix during the coming rainy season.
The doctor confirmed that in his hospital there have already been four cases of patients infected with dengue and coronavirus at the same time, two of which are quite serious with all the symptoms of the two diseases.
He also mentioned that the characteristics of both diseases make treatment for one counterproductive for the other, not finding a way to treat these patients, since medicine for one disease can act against the other.
“The coronavirus produces coagulation in the lungs, that coagulation kills the alveolar pore and lesions are produced, and when you want to treat dengue in these same patients, a hemorrhage occurs and when you put the antihemorrhagic it affects the sick lungs, that is, the treatment for one is counterproductive for the other,” he said.
Of the four patients, three are male and all are hospitalized under observation because they are older adults. Health authorities in Madre de Dios do not rule out the arrival of more patients with double dengue and coronavirus. They asked the population to take care of contracting both diseases.
Thursday (October 29) – PUNO – The artisans of the islands of Los Uros, in the Titicaca Lake (Puno), prepare to receive the tourists soon. This was highlighted by the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Tourism (Mincetur), who reported that these families have been trained to implemeent biosecurity protocols to reduce the risk of contagion from Covid-19.
The sector, through the General Directorate of Crafts (DGA), carried out this intervention as part of a series of trainings that will be provided to the artisans of Los Uros so that they can guarantee safe and quality attention to the tourists visiting the famous islands, once activities resume there.
The artisans also received bio-security items such as face masks, masks, thermometers and alcohol gel. In addition, the DGA team implemented signage and stations for the control and application of biosecurity protocols for the reception of tourists.
It should be noted that, in this first day, 52 artisans from three islands were trained: Uros Kantati, Uros Casitas del Titicaca and Uros Sumapaqari. They elaborate, mainly, representative works of the textile lines and vegetable fiber.
During the training, the rules of the contest Turismo Emprende 2020 -III, in the modality of “Artisan Reactivation”, were also presented. As it is known, this program, which grants a non-refundable fund to the beneficiaries, is a unique and special edition.
There are 335 artisans from Los Uros registered in the RNA of Mincetur. The artisans of the islands produce articles based on totora reeds, a representative plant of the place, such as breadbaskets, hats, necklaces, baskets, garbage cans, mobiles, among other objects.
Thursday (October 29) – LIMA – Yesterday President Martín Vizcarra warned that some unions “are exerting pressure” so that the government will order the opening of all economic activities “as if everything were normal”. In this sense, the head of state warned about the current situation facing several European countries that reactivated most of their economic activities and now face a second wave. “It will not be necessary to close everything again,” he warned.
A few days ago, the President of the Council of Ministers, Walter Martos, estimated that by the end of the year all economic activities could be reactivated if the evolution of COVID-19 in the country continues its downward trend. In an interview with RPP News, he added that some laboratories are offering to deliver vaccines against this disease by December.
“In an optimistic scenario, if the pandemic continues to decline, as we are at this moment, we will gradually reactivate those activities that have not yet been opened, but this depends, undoubtedly, on how the pandemic is developing and this depends, as a priority, on the behavior of each of us Peruvians in taking care not to become infected,” he explained.
Martos said that “all this depends on how the pandemic develops…Always in the government we have bet on giving priority, before any other aspect, to what is health and life and people. If that factor is guaranteed, we can activate all economic activities”.
Martos recalled that this year the country has had a low budget execution because economic activities had to be stopped due to the pandemic. However, he stressed that currently, the government has invested about 138 billion soles for the fight against the pandemic, supporting families and businesses, among others.
Thursday (October 29) – CUSCO – Diario Correo reports that firefighters, police, serenazgo and community members fight four forest fires that occur simultaneously in the Cusco Region. The strongest at the moment is the one registered in the Huarán area, belonging to the Calca province, where the fire is advancing uncontrollably towards urban areas. Fearing that it will reach the community of Tacllapata, two fire units are working in the area.
At the same time, two other accidents occurred in the lands of the community of Ccanoccata – Pisac and Andahuaylillas – Quispicanchi, these fires seemed to be controlled but the afternoon winds made them revive exponentially.
The other forest fire is the one registered in an area within the Historical Sanctuary of Machu Picchu, where the forest fighters of the Ministry of Culture have been fighting to control the flames for three days in the area of Qorihuayrachina, near Kilometer 85 of the Ollantaytambo – Machu Picchu railway.
This last emergency would become very difficult to control due to the steepness of the area and the difficult access to the mountains. It was known that by last Wednesday the flames had reached the Salapunku sector, so far no archaeological remains have been compromised.
Wednesday (October 28) – LIMA – President Vizcarra just finished a press conference this afternoon.
He opened by talking about the administration’s constant traveling to distant parts of the country to listen to and provide assistance to areas that previously felt unheard.
He then talked about new measures to close economic gaps that will be officially announced today along with a plan to expand the formal employment economy in Peru — something that has been sorely needed.
Regarding the second universal bonus, Vizcarra said more than 2.8 million Peruvians have received payment since October 10.
The President spoke at length about the current state of the pandemic in Peru.
“The pandemic has not disappeared. Countries in Europe have again increased their levels of daily contagion. And there are already eight countries in the world that have exceeded one million people infected,” he said. “We continue to increase (the number of infections), but not like in the past months. The virus is still present…More than 90% of those infected have overcome the disease, but we will continue working with all our efforts…The epidemiological curve in the last week has stabilized. We are still not in the optimal condition.”
“If there is a second wave, we have to be prepared,” he continued. “Since the virus is still in our country, we have to continue with some measures….We are extending the state of emergency until the end of November, with the restrictions that are currently in force.“
[The extension of the State of Emergency means that the 45-day period for those on a tourist visa to leave at the end of the current State of Emergency is extended also. If it is not extended past November, tourists can leave without penalty up until mid-January. It is fully expected that this period will continue to be extended, though, for perhaps many more months.)
Minister of Health, Pilar Mazzetti, remarked that this coming Halloween weekend will still require children to be at home. (In Cusco, the police have specifically said they will be arresting and fining those who promote illegal gatherings.)
“Our children can celebrate at home,” she said. “They can have meetings through digital media. They can exchange cards. They can dress up at home. Our children must stay at home….Big meetings are not allowed. People together increase the risk of contracting COVID-19.”
On the opening of churches , Vizcarra said that “today and tomorrow we are going to have meetings to polish some coordination details.”
Wednesday (October 28) – LIMA – Things continue to improve based on the reported data from Peru’s Ministry of Health.
The positivity rate on Monday dropped to an amazing 7.3% — the lowest since April 24!
Hospitalizations continue to go down and the daily average of deaths continues to drop for the month (66.7 a day) with 49 and 60 reported the last two days.
Wednesday (October 28) – CUSCO – Halloween and Todos Santos (All Saints) festivities are very close and the authorities of the municipality of Cusco indicated that they will intensify the control work to avoid crowds.
The manager of Economic Development and Municipal Services, Juvenal Zereceda, reminded the population to avoid going to nightly Halloween parties and visiting the cemeteries — activities that are not authorized in the economic reactivation phase ordered by the National Government.
He also said that the Municipality of Cusco is coordinating with Diresa to conduct COVID tests for street vendors in the city. “These days we are planning to give a free test for COVID-19 to all the street vendors we have registered, and they should voluntarily undergo this test, because they will benefit from being relocated to safer public spaces,” he added.
Monday (October 26) – PERU – The best measure of how COVID-19 is the positivity rate — the percentage of tests that prove to be positive.
This essentially gives a “polling” of the population to determine how many people are infected at any given time.
Every expert predicted that there would be a rise in infections in October after all of the country essentially opened up from total and localized quarantines during the month. This rise was expected to start appearing around 10-14 days when cases would begin to show up on testing.
Surprisingly, October’s positivity rate showed a massive drop beginning on October 10 and, at the time when positivity should be increasing, the percentage has remained steady rather than showing any increase at levels not seen in about six months.
(It should be noted that testing levels have remained consistent at relatively high levels throughout the month.)
Other indicators that support the encouraging trends are the decreases in hospitalizations and the significant drop in daily deaths reported across the country compared to previous months.
Monday (October 26) – LIMA – According to a survey by El Comercio-Ipsos, conducted in Lima, 58% of Limeños would not go to the beach even if it were allowed, due to the COVID-19 pandemic and a possible risk of contagion.
“The proximity of people is a big problem. We could lotify, put up ribbons and take turns entering the beach. The question is: are we going to respect them? It is a question for the population,” said Pilar Mazzetti, Minister of Health, this week.
In addition, according to the same survey, 49% of Limeños believe that access to spas should be allowed, however, with certain capacities and established schedules. Meanwhile, 33% are in favor of the entry is totally prohibited.
Another fact is that 17% of those surveyed believe that entry to beaches should be free, and that each person should be responsible for taking care of themselves. On the other hand, 23% of people said they would go to the beach if there were no restrictions, however, less than other years and only 12% would normally go as before the pandemic.
Monday (October 26) – LIMA – Yesterday Peru’s Ministry of Health reported 2,501 more cases of COVID -19 and 54 more deaths on Saturday.
The positivity rate dropped back down to 11.2% after four days above 12%.
There are currently 5,492 patients hospitalized by COVID-19, of which 1,050 are in ICU with mechanical ventilation.
So far 807,636 people completed their period of home isolation or were discharged from a health facility.
Monday (October 26) – MADRE DE DIOS – RPP Noticias reports that , through a joint effort between the National Police and the Armed Forces (FF.AA), with the participation of the Public Ministry, they destroyed a clandestine camp and 16 dredges used for illegal mining in Madre de Dios, an illegal activity that affects the environment, as reported by Mindef and Mininter in a press release.
In order to supervise these actions, the Minister of Defense, Jorge Chávez Cresta; and the Minister of the Interior, César Gentille Vargas, arrived in the Madre de Dios region accompanied by high ranking military and police officers, a representative of the Public Ministry and of the regional authority.
“Just as we are successfully fighting terrorism in Vraem, our Armed Forces and National Police are deepening the integration of their actions against environmental crimes. This is the only way to eradicate illegal logging and mining,” stressed the Minister of Defense.
The operation was carried out at the mouth of the Inambari River, in the Ucayali region. Both authorities observed the destruction of the machinery used for illegal mining on board a helicopter.
Meanwhile, about 500 gallons of fuel, 15 engines, burners and other supplies used by the illegal miners were seized.
Minister Chávez Cresta manifested the seriousness of the damage generated by the illegal mining and said that these efforts will continue to achieve the eradication of this illegal activity against the jungle of Madre de Dios.
“We see the damage that illegal mining can do with a single dredge, affecting the ecosystem. We have been able to see that not only is the river basin affected, but also the forest is affected by illegal logging,” said the head of Defense.
On the other hand, representatives of the Executive visited the Pachacútec Fort and the Tambopata police station to salute the police and military work that is being done in this area, since these personnel are facing the scourge of illegal mining.
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