Watch: PM gets exemption from quarantine after Libya trip

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

Prime Minister Robert Abela who led a delegation to Libya earlier this week will be exempted from undergoing mandatory quarantine, Superintendent of Public Health Prof. Charmaine Gauci declared.

The notice was published in the Government Gazette on Friday.

Mandatory quarantine has been suspended for those who were traveling on board flight 9H-ELI CITATION X from Malta to Libya and who returned on the same flight on 28 May, according to the notice which was published. The suspension was granted on the basis that the government officials traveling to and from Libya were providing an “essential service”. Further it was noted that they were abroad for a very limited period of time.

Abela was accompanied in Libya by Foreign Affairs Minister Evarist Bartolo and Home Affairs Minister Byron Camilleri.

Footage of the visit which has been circulating on social media shows Libyan and Maltese officials shaking hands and not wearing masks. The health authorities have consistently urged the public to practice social distancing and to avoid meeting others in person unnecessarily. The public has also been urged to wear masks in public.

In Libya, the Maltese government and the Libyan government signed a memorandum of understanding on migration. The visit to Libya was unannounced.

Opposition spokesperson for justice Nationalist MP Jason Azzopardi sarcastically asked whether the footage which was circulating shows Abela practicing social distancing.

Domanda lil Prof Charmaine Gauci. Dan il-filmat juri social distancing? Min gie mill-Libja llum irid jew ma jridx jaghmel kwarantina?

Posted by Jason Azzopardi on Thursday, May 28, 2020

Those being repatriated to Malta or entering for very specific reasons are placed under mandatory quarantine.

Local health authorities have encouraged the public to avoid all hand shakes and instead adopt ‘elbow’ or ‘footshakes’

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