Solomon Islands confirm third case

Another case of Covid-19 has been confirmed in quarantine in Solomon Islands: after nine months virus-free the archipelago has recorded three cases in less than a fortnight.

All three cases have been in quarantine, detected in students repatriated from the Philippines.

Solomon Islands prime minister Manasseh Sogavare has resisted imposing lockdowns. There are fears if the virus escapes quarantine it could run unchecked through crowded Honiara and quickly overwhelm the country’s fragile healthcare system.

Elsewhere in the Pacific, the US territory of Guam recorded its 63rd death – from 3,427 known infections. The Mariana Islands, also a US territory, has recorded 80 cases, the majority of those transported into the country.

In PNG, Covid cases continue to be detected in provinces across the country, including new outbreaks in the eastern highlands. The country has recorded 575 confirmed cases, with seven deaths, though the actual number of infections is likely many times higher.

The Pacific is the least Covid-infected region on earth. The small and remote island nations and territories of Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau, Samoa, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu are believed to be still free of the virus.

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