Coronavirus safety restrictions will be tightened for a week as of Sunday, in view of opening schools nationwide on Monday January 11, announced government spokesperson Stelios Petsas on Saturday.

The decision to bring back the stricter curfew (21:00-05:00) and to void all retail sector conveniences allowed over the Christmas and New Year festive season (such as ‘click-away’), was taken to prevent a spike in new cases of infections after the lenient measures of recent weeks, Petsas added.

Therefore, as of 06:00 on January 3 through to 06:00 on Monday January 11, bookshops, hairdressers and personal beauty salons will be closed, and the collection of e-orders by customers (‘click-away’ method) will be paused. Vehicle Roadworthiness Test Centers (KTEO) will also close during this time.

Game hunting and fishing is also forbidden anew, he added.

Churches will also be closed and there will be no traditional outdoors ceremony of the blessing of the waters held on Epiphany Day, January 6; closed-doors liturgies will instead be held on the day at churches, without the public attending.

The aforementioned retail sector services will resume on January 11, Petsas underlined, and churches will also reopen for Sunday liturgies that week.

Greece’s epidemiological status will be assessed anew towards the end of January’s second week, in aid of fresh decisions regarding updated restrictions and safety protocols.

“At least 2,500 citizens spent Christmas in hospitals with Covid-19 and another 400 are still in ICUs, so we move ahead defending ourselves, in light of launching our attack against the virus with mass vaccinations,” Petsas stressed.



Greece registers 262 new coronavirus cases on Saturday, with 431 patients currently intubated


Greece confirmed 262 new coronavirus cases on Saturday, of which 22 were identified at the country’s entry points, said the National Public Health Organization (EODY).

All cases in Greece total 139,709 of which 5,457 relate to travel from abroad and 41,741 to already confirmed infection cases.

A total of 431 patients are intubated. Their median age is 67 years, 79.8 pct have an underlying condition or are aged 70 or more and 288 of them are men. Another 896 have been discharged from ICUs since the start of the pandemic.

EODY also registered 40 new deaths, bringing coronavirus fatalities to 4,921 in total. The median age of all fatalities was 79 years, 95.5 pct had an underlying condition and/or were aged 70 or above, and 2,918 were men.