COVID-19 restrictions have been extended by another week to 1 February.
On Friday, Greece confirmed 585 new coronavirus cases with seven of these identified at the country’s entry points.
The National Public Health Organization (EODY) also confirmed 28 new deaths, with the total number of COVID-19 fatalities in Greece at 5,598.
Greece’s Civil Protection and Crisis Management Minister Nikos Hardalias said that there would be a continuation of the overnight curfew (21:00-05:00), the SMS permits for ortings and the obligatory wearing of face masks at all indoor and outdoor public spaces.
The only change announced on Friday was a lifting of maximum taxi passengers allowed to two (besides the driver) from the current one person rule.
Game hunting and fishing are also prohibited, except for the regions of Evros, Rodopi and Xanthi, where the hunting of wild boar will be allowed so as to prevent the spread of African swine fever.
The reopening of sports facilities will be considered and discussed next week, Mr Hardalias said.
Local branches of the Greek Organization of Football Prognostics S.A. (OPAP) will reopen on Monday 1 February.
The additional restrictions at the regions of Argolis, the local communities of Anthili in the municipalities of Lamieon and Paleokastro at the Sitia-Lasithi municipalities in Crete will be lifted on Monday.
Extra measures, however, will take effect at a Roma community in the Distio municipality, at the Kimi-Aliveri municipality, Evia, he added, as of Saturday January 23 and until Monday February 1.
Current restrictions in effect at the regions of Boeotia, Lesvos, and at the municipalities of Sparta, Eordea, are also extended to February 1, as they are also at the community of Krokos in the Kozani municipality, and the municipalities of Siatista, at the Voios region in Kozani.
Extra measures at Aspropyrgos, West Attica, and at the Acharnes municipality in East Attica have been extended following 175 new cases of COVID-19 at Acharnes from 166 cases last week.
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Professor Vana Papaevangelou said the pandemic has stabilized nationwide over the last few weeks, but not to the degree which had been hoped, adding also that the winter season “does not help for a faster drop in the number of new infections”.
There are currently 6,000 active cases in the country, half of which are registered in Attica alone, but the actual number of asymptomatic carriers is not yet known, and is greater, she said. The daily new infections average stands at 467.
Junior High Schools set to open doors
Junior High Schools and General High Schools (Grades 7-12) will reopen their classrooms to students on Monday 1 February, announced Greece’s Education Minister Niki Kerameus.
Universities, second-chance schools, private colleges and tuition centers, language centers, and adult learning centers will all continue to operate via distance learning, she clarified.
Medical staff of the National Public Health Organization (EODY) will collect test samples at schools on a regular basis, she noted, while strict safety measures will be in effect.
Students over 16 and school teachers can sign up for a free coronavirus test at edu.testing.gov.gr, the minister underlined.