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Greek Authorities Worried About Rising Covid-19 Cases in Attica

Athens, Greece. Photo Source: Visit Greece/ Y. Skoulas

Athens, Greece. Photo Source: Visit Greece/ Y. Skoulas

Greek authorities are constantly revising measures based on the epidemiological burden of each area with particular concerns focused on several western Attica suburbs where the number of Covid-19 cases is on the rise.

According to the National Public Health Organization (EODY), there are currently 393 positive cases of the virus in Peristeri, Ilion, Petroupolis, Agious Anargirous, Haidari and Agia Varvara.

“The situation worries and concerns us,” said Health Minister Vasilis Kikilias, adding that all decisions will be based on upcoming committee guidance.

Health experts, however, have repeatedly warned that in view of the new figures and the changing dynamics, tighter measures are being examined and may be introduced unexpectedly.

In the meantime, according to an education ministry statement citing relevant guidance by the Covid-19 committee of experts released on Thursday, nursery and grade schools will be re-opening on Monday 11 January as initially announced.

A decision to re-open secondary schools and tertiary education will be reached following assessment of epidemiological data next week. Until then, classes will be held online starting tomorrow, January 8.

Health authorities are expecting an increase in the coming weeks of Covid-19 cases citing holiday season gatherings as the cause.

At the same time, the arrival this week of a variant of the virus has caused alarm among epidemiologists some of whom are calling for even harsher measures.

“A third wave is imminent,” warned the head of the Papanikolaou Hospital intensive care department Nikolaos Kapravelos, who said that besides the holidays, trade and tourism have also contributed to the rise in cases in Thessaloniki.

In the last 24 hours, Greece recorded 816 new Covid-19 and 48 deaths.

Earlier this week, Greek authorities ordered tougher  lockdown restrictions for the cities of Aspropyrgos and Elefsina in Western Attica, until January 11.

Strict containment measures are also in effect in Kozani, Eordea and Voio (regional unit of Kozani) in northern Greece until January 11.

Harsher restrictions are also in place in Paleokastro, Crete until January 15; as well as in the towns of Neda, Agiochori and Ipio in the regional unit of Rodopi until January 10.

At the same time, Greece extended Covid-19 restrictions until January 11 shutting down hair salons, bookstores and shops operating by click-away that had been allowed to re-open during the holiday.

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