Easter Island residents oppose return of tourists

by time news

Some 67% of voters refused to reopen the island in a vote marked by a very strong abstention.

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Easter Island has been cut off from the world for more than a year and a half due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Its some 10,000 inhabitants were called, Sunday, October 24, to answer with “yes” or “no” to the question: “Do you want to open the island in January?” And theThe “no” won with 649 votes, against 320 for the “yes” and three null votes. Only 972 people took part in the vote, or less than 20% of the inhabitants called to the polls.

Currently, the island has eight cases of Covid-19 and no new cases since September 2020. No deaths have been recorded since the start of the pandemic. According to official figures, 73% of the population is vaccinated against Covid-19 on Easter Island but the medical center in Hanga Roa, the capital, does not have any intensive care unit.

The result of the vote is not binding and the final decision will rest with the health authorities of the region of Valparaiso, Chile, on which Easter Island depends, or the Chilean Ministry of Health, which has not yet said s ‘he intended to comply or not with the consultation.

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