Tonga reports first case of coronavirus

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Tonga reports first case of coronavirus

Tonga has its first case of coronavirus.

A fully vaccinated person who arrived on a repatriation flight from New Zealand had the infection, the BBC reported Saturday.

As a result, residents on the main island of Tongatapu face a possible lockdown next week, Prime Minister Pohiva Tu’i’onetoa announced.

Tonga was one of the last countries not to have reported Covid infections. Only a third of its population has been fully vaccinated.

More than 100,000 people live on the island nation, located north-west of New Zealand.

Pohiva Tu'i'onetoa, Prime Minister of Tonga
Pohiva Tu’i’onetoa, Prime Minister of Tonga, said residents on the main island of Tongatapu face a possible lockdown next week.
UN Web TV via AP

The infected individual was among 215 people on a repatriation flight from Christchurch, New Zealand. Others onboard included members of Tonga’s Olympic team, who had been stranded in the city since the Tokyo Olympics.

The individual had tested negative before leaving the country, New Zealand’s health ministry said. The infection was detected after a routine test Thursday, while passengers from the flight were quarantined.

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