Greece will be locked again for three weeks from Saturday to fight a second wave of the coronavirus, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis announced.
“It was a difficult decision,” but “three weeks of action will have to be taken to overcome this second wave,” he told a video conference Thursday.
As part of the measures, Greeks can only leave their homes if they make an official request via SMS or mobile phone and then receive approval.
Only “essential stores,” including supermarkets and pharmacies, can stay open when the lockdown begins at 6 a.m. (0400 GMT) on Saturday, Mitsotakis said.
Unlike the previous six-week lockdown that began in late March, he said kindergartens and elementary schools will remain open.
Secondary school students are taught remotely, which is what university students are already doing as part of recent activities.
The new lockdown comes when the daily number of coronavirus cases continues to increase.
A total of 2,646 new infections and 18 deaths were recorded on Wednesday, a significant increase from last week.
The virus killed 673 people out of almost 47,000 infected in Greece.
But it’s the number of people in the intensive care unit that worries the authorities the most.
The number of people hospitalized with ventilators more than doubled in one month from 82 on October 4 to 169 on Wednesday.
“Why make this decision now?” Said the Prime Minister. “In the past five days we have seen a dangerous increase in the number of deaths” and the number of people in intensive care in the hospital.
(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by GossipMantri staff and published from a syndicated feed.)