The Greek government has imposed a late-night curfew on bars and restaurants in popular holiday destinations, following a sharp rise in Covid-19 cases.
Establishments will be forced to close from midnight until 7am, with the curfew affecting the well-known tourist islands of Mykonos, Santorini, Corfu, Crete, Rhodes, Zakynthos and Kos, spokeswoman Aristotelia Peloni said in a televised address.
Health minister Vassilis Kikilias said on Monday that the infection curve was ‘rising dangerously’ on the islands, with 203 new infections recorded on Sunday – the highest since the start of the pandemic.
The restrictions will be in place from Tuesday to Sunday August 23. The cities of Thessaloniki, Larissa, Volos and Katerini will also be affected, as was the Halkidiki peninsula which is popular with Balkan visitors.
As of August 7, Greece was exempt from current quarantine rules in England.
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New entry restrictions were also announced for Balkan arrivals and passengers flying in from several EU countries.
From August 17, all passengers on flights from Belgium, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, Spain and Sweden must provide a negative Covid-19 result obtained up to 72 hours before entry, as must all land border arrivals.
Peloni also declared that only 750 people will be allowed in daily from Albania from August 16.
Greece’s public health watchdog announced another 126 infections on Monday, with officials blaming the increase in cases on overcrowding in clubs and social events.
The civil protection agency last week made masks compulsory in all indoor public areas.
Among other measures announced on Monday was the decision to scrap Greece’s top trade exhibition, the annual Thessaloniki international fair in September.
As of yet, the government has ruled out a general lockdown after gradually reopening the economy in May and starting to accept foreign arrivals in June to salvage part of the tourism season which is vital to the economy.
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