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Greece Goes into Hard Covid-19 Lockdown Until January 11

Greek Government Spokesperson Stelios Petsas.

Greek Government Spokesperson Stelios Petsas.

The Greek government has decided to tighten restrictive measures against the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic for next week in order to keep the virus infections at low levels and for schools to be able to open safely on January 11th.

The tightening of the measures for the week of January 3-10, 2021, is a decision of the prime minister for precautionary reasons, Government Spokesperson Stelios Petsas said on Saturday.

Therefore, all activities and services that were gradually allowed in Greece before the holidays will be suspended from 6am Sunday, January 3, until 6am Monday, January 11.

More specifically, until January 11:

The “click away” shopping method in retail stores, the operation of bookstores, hairdressers, nail salons and vehicle inspection services (KTEO) will be suspended.

– All hunting and fishing activities will be banned.

– Movement will be banned from 9pm until 5am throughout Greece. Movement during the curfew will only be allowed for work (citizens must have an employer certificate with them), health reasons and for walking a pet (by sending an SMS to the five-digit mobile phone service 13033). For movement beyond curfew hours, citizens must send an SMS to 13033.

– Churches will remain closed to worshipers and there will be no outdoor public ceremonies (blessing of the waters) on the day of the Epiphany (January 6). After January 11, worshipers will be allowed to go to church for Sunday services (according to the rules that were in place during the Christmas and New Year’s holidays).

According to Petsas, new coronavirus cases in Greece are at high levels and the pressure on the country’s health system continues.

“Our hospitals continue to treat a large number of patients. Unfortunately, about 2,500 of our fellow citizens spent Christmas in Covid beds, while more than 400 are still in intensive care units… From tomorrow, therefore, and for a week, we have to make another effort. It is worth doing so, as a precaution… So we stay home again,” he said.

At the end of the second week of January, the epidemiological situation in the country will be evaluated and new announcements will be made for Greece’s other sectors of social and economic activity.

Greek health authorities on Friday announced 597 new coronavirus cases and 43 deaths. Since the start of the pandemic, the total number of cases in the country has reached 139,447. The Covid-19 death toll in Greece is 4,881.

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