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Politics

COVID-19 Rising, Mitsotakis Pleads With Young to Obey Health Protocols

ATHENS – With Greece's young helping spike cases of COVID-19 with wild partying on islands, villas and bars – apparently unstoppable- Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis reached out to them to stop doing it, with no sign it would.

Along with more measures on top of those that were so ignored or defied that there's been a resurgence of the Coronavirus, the New Democracy leader urged the young to stop irresponsible behavior, many saying it's a disease for the old.

“I want to make a special appeal to young people,” Mitsotakis said. “Be careful; take care of yourselves; you are not invulnerable, and those who are particularly not invulnerable are your parents and grandparents,” he said.

That came after repeated scenes of mass crowds at nightclubs as well as concerts that are allegedly barred and with few reports offending facilities were being closed or fined as the government said would happen.

He urged – although it's a legal requirement not being fully enforced – people to wear masks in public gathering spots designated as mandatory for their use and to keep a safe social distance of at least 1.5 meters (4.92 feet) apart.

Deputy Civil Protection Minister Nikos Hardalias announced additional restrictions until Aug. 24 as many Greeks headed out of the cities for summer holidays in their villages and islands and to celebrate the so-called Summer Easter on Aug. 15, a religious holiday.

Greek health authorities said there wee 230 cases on Aug. 15, including 27 brought in my tourists who are supposed to show they are COVID-19 proof and undergo random tests.

That brought the total to 6,858 cases, soaring out of control in August, with three deaths bringing that toll to 226, with 23 on ventilators and 136 having left Intensive Care Units (ICU's) after treatment.

As of Aug. 17, cafes and restaurants in many parts of the country, including the capital Athens, will have to close at midnight and not reopen before 7 a.m.

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