Guatemala on Tuesday said it was halting incoming flights carrying deportees and asylum-seekers sent by the U.S. as a safety precaution against the spread of the coronavirus. The measure covered two flights of Guatemalan deportees scheduled for the day, as well as indefinitely suspending flights carrying people from other Central American countries being sent to Guatemala under an asylum cooperation agreement with the United States. Passengers sit on a bus at the main bus station in Guatemala City, Friday, March 13, 2020.  (AP)”Starting today all flights of returnees under the (agreement with Washington) are suspended for the duration of the state of calamity,” Foreign Minister Pedro Brolo said. In the case of deported Guatemalans, Brolo said it was a “precautionary measure” until health protocols can be put in place to transport people to their hometowns, since public transportation has been shut down. The ministry said U.S. authorities are increasing health checks of people in Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) custody “to guarantee that no returnee is sent with symptoms related to COVID-19 or coronavirus.” Guatemala, which has reported one fatality from the novel coronavirus and confirmed five other cases, has closed its borders to foreigners, though Guatemalan nationals are constitutionally permitted


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