ATHENS -- Greece's epidemiological burden remains high, with some regions still heavily afflicted by the coronavirus pandemic, said Minister for Civil Protection Nikos Hardalias at Friday's live briefing on the pandemic's course in the country.
Of the 74 regions in Greece, the following 18 are showing the highest number of infections currently, regardless of the pandemic's course in these areas. From highest to lowest, these are: Pella, Drama, Thessaloniki, Grevena, Florina, Pieria, Imathia, Serres, Larisa, Kilkis, Chalkidiki, Magnesia, Xanthi, Karditsa, Evros, Kavala, Rodopi and Trikala. Four are in central Greece and the rest in northern Greece.
Additionally, health authorities are concerned about the recent spike in three prefectures in western Greece, said the minister, where people there must diligently comply with health measures. He named the prefectures as those of Achaia and Ilia in the Peloponnese, and Etoloakarnania on the mainland.
The minister said that citizens at the city of Patras should observe the current measures without letting down their guard, especially ahead of celebrations of the city's patron Saint Andreas on Monday. Hardalias stressed that the rising number of infections in the Peloponnesian regions are important enough to have prompted Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis to speak with Patras Mayor Konstantinos Peletidis on Friday, to ensure that all local authorities keep the public on high alert.
Meanwhile, the country's police authorities have carrried out some 1,341,961 inspections for safety measures violations since November 7. They revealed 34,429 violations which incurred fines totaling 6,157,127 euros.
Hardalias declined to say whether the lockdown will be lifted after the December 7 new deadline for the lockdown, commenting only that this year Christmas celebrations will be different from other years.