They, for instance, are required to avoid mass gatherings, maintain physical and social distancing measures, and always wear face masks
Sorong, W Papua (ANTARA) - The Sorong city administration in West Papua Province reopened public access to flight services to and from the city under a stringent implementation of the COVID-19 and healthcare protocols.

The city administration arrived at the decision after a meeting with related authorities, Sorong Mayor Lambert Jitmau notified journalists on Wednesday.

"Hotels, restaurants, and food stalls are also allowed to reopen. To this end, we are issuing an official letter on June 23, 2020," he noted, adding that two aircraft will operate daily at the Sorong airport.

The incoming flight to Sorong will merely be allowed on the Sorong-Jakarta route, while flights from Sorong to other cities and towns in Papua and West Papua were not limited.

Jitmau emphasized that the resumption of public access to aviation services and other public facilities in Sorong City will be strictly monitored.

To this end, the police and military personnel will be deployed to help community members abide by the mandatory coronavirus protocols.

The community members should not panic. Instead, they can resume their routine activities by practicing preventive measures as necessitated in the COVID-19 protocols.

"They, for instance, are required to avoid mass gatherings, maintain physical and social distancing measures, and always wear face masks," he stated.

In spite of the ongoing threats of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, flight services have also resumed in other parts of Indonesia.

The Kepulauan Bangka Belitung provincial government, for instance, has permitted airlines to resume flight services from the Depati Amir Airport in Pangkalpinang to Tanjungpandan, Batam, Palembang, and Solo.

However, the provincial government temporarily only allows each airline to operate on one flight route daily during the enforcement of the new normal order, Head of the Kepulauan Bangka Belitung Transportation Office K. A.Tajuddin remarked.

The restriction on flight frequencies for each airline was part of the Kepulauan Bangka Belitung governor's cautious policies to respond to the central government's decision to relax measures for the operation of means of public transportation amid the COVID-19 pandemic, he explained.

The flight routes served by several airlines from the Pangkalpinang-based Airport are Pangkalpinang-Jakarta, Tanjungpandan-Jakarta, as well as Pangkalpinang-Tanjungpandan, Batam, Palembang, and Solo, he remarked.

Local airline PT TransNusa Aviation Mandiri in Kupang, the capital of East Nusa Tenggara Province, has also planned to resume flights on its eastern Indonesian routes on June 22.

All passengers must adhere to the COVID-19 protocols before being allowed to board the TransNusa aircraft as part of the endeavors to thwart the transmission of the lethal virus, including presenting health documents to ascertain they are healthy and did not contract COVID-19.

Doctors from credible health centers and hospitals issue the health documents. Furthermore, passengers should possess official notifications that confirm they have tested negative for coronavirus.

On May 27, 2020, President Joko Widodo had unveiled his plan to expand the enforcement of the new normal order if the transmission of COVID-19 significantly declined in the selected areas.
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Translator: Ernes BK, Rahmad Nasution
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
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