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Covid-19: Greece Not Ruling Out Local Lockdowns in Case of Virus Load

Athens. Photo Source: Visit Greece / Y. Skoulas

Athens. Photo Source: Visit Greece / Y. Skoulas

Greek authorities are leaving open the possibility of ordering local lockdowns should Covid-19 incidents rise anywhere across the country.

Government Spokesperson Aristotelia Peloni confirmed the news on Monday during a weekly briefing on coronavirus developments underlining that inspections in establishments that have reopened have increased and that people will have to comply with the rules.

“If and where there are local outbreaks, they will be dealt with properly,” she said speaking after Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis called for responsible actions, adding that “freedom does not mean negligence”.

Mitsotakis referred to the downward trend in Covid-19 cases which fell to 1,402 and 56 deaths on Monday. However, he went on to stress that “we have definitively not rid ourselves of the pandemic… the pandemic is still here”, warning that the law will be enforced and violators will be punished.

Epidemiologists meanwhile, including Covid-19 committee member Sotiris Tsiodras and infectious disease expert Haralambos Gogos stress the importance of not only completing vaccinations but also the continued use of masks and adherence to social distancing.

Both health experts noted that should there be a renewed increase in cases and a spread during the immunization period, there is considerable chance of new strains.

Photo source: @WTTC

Gogos said that local containment measures are the main “Covid spread management tool”, clarifying that at the moment there is no need for a nationwide lockdown. An example of a local lockdown is the island of Kalymnos, where measures have been extended to May 24.

Lastly, referring to so-called “vaccination privileges”, Gogos said perhaps this could encourage others to get the jab.

According to the latest data, several regions in Greece are recording increased cases among younger individuals, including Etoloakarnania in Central Greece and the islands of Ikaria, Karpathos, Corfu, and Skiathos.

Referring to tourism, Peloni said that 24,000 flights touched down in Greece in the first two days of the country’s opening to tourists, adding that the government’s Covid protection plan was currently underway. 

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About the Author
Chicago-born and raised, Maria Paravantes has over two decades of journalistic experience covering tourism and travel, gastronomy, arts, music and culture, economy and finance, politics, health and social issues for international press and media. She has worked for Reuters, The Telegraph, Huffington Post, Billboard Magazine, Time Out Athens, the Athens News, Odyssey Magazine and, among others. She has also served as Special Advisor to Greece’s minister of Foreign Affairs, and to the mayor of Athens on international press and media issues. Maria is currently a reporter, content and features writer for GTP Headlines.

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