Six new cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in Colombia, according to the Ministry of Health, bringing the national total to 22.
The patients who tested positive for coronavirus are two adults, a male and female, residents of Medellín, and adult male in Rionegro, Antioquia. Three new cases have been confirmed in Bogotá involving two adult women, and an adult male. The Ministry highlighted that of the six new cases, three appear to have been brought in from overseas.
The cities with confirmed COVID-19 cases are Bogotá, Medellín, Buga, Cartagena, Neiva, Rionegro, Villavicencio and Palmira.
With the number of confirmed cases rising in the country, and confirmation that the novel coronavirus reached Venezuela, as of 5:00 am the all overland borders with Venezuela have been closed as part of the directives issued with the national Health Emergency declaration.
“The border closing is as a protection measure against the situation that is also occurring in the neighboring country,” said President Duque during a statement on Friday evening. The decision to close the border with Venezuela will impact thousands of Venezuelans who every day enter Colombia at the border city of Cúcuta in search of medical and essential household supplies.
Colombia has received some 1.6 million migrants from Venezuela during the last several years as a consequence of the economic collapse of the oil-rich nation. Colombia maintains no diplomatic ties with the regime of Nicolás Maduro, recognizing opposition leader Juan Guaidó as the legitimate President.
Under the Health Emergency measures, all arrivals who are not foreign residents or nationals and have visited Europe or Asia in the last 14 days will be barred from entering Colombia. Colombians and foreign residents must self-isolate for two weeks upon arrival.
The country’s Health Emergency is in effect un May 30 and enforced under the criminal code.