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People wearing face masks as a precaution against the spread of Coronavirus stand in a queue at a supermarket in Peru SIPA USA/PA Images
gender divide

Peru restrictions: Men and women given alternative days to go outside in bid to slow virus spread

Meanwhile, security forces in the Philippines have been told to “shoot dead” anyone causing trouble in lockdown areas.

PERUVIAN PRESIDENT MARTIN Vizcarra has announced a new measure restricting public movement by gender, as the country tries to curb the spread of the new coronavirus.

Men will only be allowed to leave their homes on Mondays, Wednesday and Fridays, while women are authorized to step outdoors on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.

No one is allowed out on Sundays.

“We have 10 days left, let’s make this extra effort to control this disease,” said Vizcarra.

He said the restrictions would apply until 12 April, the original end date to a lockdown he imposed on 16 March.

Panama announced a similar measure on Monday that went into effect two days later and will last for 15 days.

By yesterday, Peru had recorded just over 1,400 coronavirus cases and 55 deaths.

Vizcarra said the new measure aims to reduce by half the number of people circulating in public at any one time.

“The (existing) control measures have given good results, but not what was hoped for,” said Vizcarra.

These restrictions will not apply to people employed in essential services, such as grocery stores, banks, pharmacies and hospitals.

Vizcarra added that security forces tasked with patrolling the streets have been told to be respectful toward the gender identities of LGBT people.

“The armed forces and police have been instructed not to have homophobic attitudes,” said the president.


Meanwhile, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has told security forces they should shoot dead anyone causing “trouble” in areas locked down due to the coronavirus pandemic.

About half the country’s roughly 110 million people are currently under quarantine – including millions in deep poverty, left jobless by tough restrictions on movement.

Hours before Duterte gave the order in a speech on Wednesday, nearly two dozen people from a slum community in the capital Manila were arrested for holding a protest that accused the government of failing to provide food aid to the poor.

“My orders are to the police and military, also village officials, that if there is trouble or the situation arises that people fight and your lives are on the line, shoot them dead,” Duterte said.

“Instead of causing trouble, I’ll send you to the grave,” he said, adding that the outbreak is getting worse more than two weeks into the lockdown. 

The Philippines has so far detected 2,311 cases of Covid-19 and reported 96 deaths. However, the country has only begun ramping up testing.  

 Includes reporting by © – AFP 2020

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