COVID19: Extra police checks as Cyprus lifts lockdown

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As Cyprus starts lifting lockdown police are stepping up checks to ensure the public and businesses follow the rules during the exit strategy.

With COVID data improving significantly, as a result of tighter measures in December and the second national lockdown introduced in January, police are tasked with monitoring the new measures.

According to Cyprus police, there were more checks in January as officers took to the streets to impose movement restriction during the lockdown.

Last month, police fined 2,892 people and 57 businesses for breaking COVID restrictions.

January fines were made after carrying out 250,401 checks, up from 184,692 in December, when 2,419 citizens and 105 businesses were reported.

Police in January carried out more than half of the 509,205 checks performed in the past three months.

Most of the fines were for not wearing a protective mask or the failure to request permission to leave the home, by sending in a message to the 8998 platform during lockdown.

A significant number of bookings concerned moving during the nighttime curfew.

Over the weekend, police officers carried out more than 12,000 checks.

According to police, 5,500 checks were carried out within a six-hour window on Saturday.

On Sunday, officers carried out 7,795 checks across the island with 710 involving people who wanted to go to the Troodos mountain.

The roads were blocked off after the government banned such trips.

The police said 343 vehicles were forced to turn back as they were not allowed access to the highest hills of the mountains.

Cyprus police reminded the public that due to a decree issued by the Health Minister, nature trails are now off-limits for people wanting to exercise.

With hairdressers and beauty salons opening on Monday, limited home visits allowed and retail shops to open on 8 February, police will have their work cut out.

Cyprus on Sunday announced two deaths and 106 new cases of Covid-19 from 28,364 tests with a positivity rate of 0.37%.

The total of cases reported in Cyprus now stands at 30,876 and 199 deaths.