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COVID19: Cyprus braces for islandwide curfew

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Cyprus is bracing itself for the government to impose a night-time curfew to combat the spread of Covid-19 after health officials announced another 174 new cases of SARS-CoV-2.

Following a cabinet meeting Wednesday, President Nicos Anastasiades is expected to address the nation to announce stricter measures in a bid to curb the alarming spread of coronavirus.

Health Minister Constantinos Ioannou is scheduled to present measures suggested by his COVID to his fellow Ministers and President Nicos Anastasiades at 18.30 on Wednesday.

It is understood health experts are leaning towards avoiding a blanket lockdown, opting for a softer option to buffer the virus.

Essentially, the government is expected to extend measures adopted for Limassol and Paphos districts, to the rest of the island.

Proposed measures include:

  • A curfew throughout Cyprus from 11 pm, and the closure of restaurants and other dining areas by 10:30 pm. Only people travelling to visit a hospital will be excluded.
  • Changing rooms at gyms will be out of operation and the number of people at children’s play areas restricted.
  • Measures already in effect providing, amongst other,  the maximum number of people per gathering at 10, and of people per table in restaurants at six, plus the mandatory use of a mask in all open and closed spaces remain in force.
  • Regarding the districts of Limassol and Paphos which are the epicentre of the spread of the virus with a record-high number of new infection cases, additional measures taken 10 days ago will remain in effect.
  • Ban on extracurricular leisure activities for children to continue as well as all organised grassroots fixtures for under 18s.
  • Play centres in Limassol and Paphos are to shut.

Some measures and restrictions such as mask-wearing indoors and outdoors are expected to stay in place until January.

Other measures already in place include restrictions on the number of people who attend social events such as weddings and baptisms and other religious ceremonies, such as funerals and memorials.

Currently:

  • No more than 10 people can gather in a household socially or in a public place
  • Places of worships can only have a maximum of 75 people.
  • Official sports fixtures must be conducted without spectators.
  • The maximum number of persons allowed to be served in catering establishments is 75 for indoor spaces and 150 for outdoor spaces.
  • Tables at restaurants, bars or sit-down events should seat no more than six people.
  • Cinemas, theatres, and event halls are allowed a maximum 50% of capacity
  • Cocktail parties and receptions at weddings and christenings are banned.
  • A physical presence is only allowed for lunch or dinner with a maximum number of 350 sitting down to eat at such celebrations.
  • The application of special hours for vulnerable groups at grocery shops will still apply (between 8 am – 9 am).