The Quarantine is a defensive cordon of customs and military forces, combined with protective technical protocols, intended to prevent infection by the Virus. The Quarantine was the main focus of the Spinward Accords: signing created an obligation for each member state "to create, uphold and maintain certain regulations aimed at preventing viral infection among the Spinward States, and building and maintaining sufficient forces to enforce the Quarantine at all necessary points of their space...... within a reasonable framework that can be considered responsible within the tenets of the Accords." This last bit of text permits some leeway to signers to create a Quarantine within the contexts of their own particular circumstances, without undermining the common defense and welfare of the Spinward States as a whole.
This little bit of wriggle room has created a wide and varying degree of interpretations of a Quarantine that is "considered responsible" by the whole. Arguably the strictest Quarantine is maintained by the largest Spinward States: the Regency, the Aslan along the Rift and the Zhodani. Regulations generally become more lax, and enforcement less stringent as one gets farther away from the trailing "hot zone." Within the more spinward reaches, especially the New Colonies in Fulani or Theron sectors, or regions farther along the Zhodani Shadow, the Quarantine exists mainly in name rather than in fact.
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