x

Society

Cyprus Makes Mask-Wearing Compulsory in Large indoor Spaces

NICOSIA — Cyprus on Friday made mask-wearing compulsory in all indoor areas where people gather in large numbers, like malls and supermarkets, and is significantly ramping up random coronavirus testing at its two main airports. An upsurge of new confirmed cases in the last week has alarmed authorities.

Health Minister Constantinos Ioannou said that a rollback of COVID-19 restrictions combined with a low infection rate led to "excessive complacency" by some people, whom he blamed for "choosing to recklessly violate health protocols" and "put public health at risk."

He said the latest spike is "exceedingly worrying" because people infected with the virus who don't show any symptoms are spreading the disease in a way that is making containment efforts difficult.

Ioannou said it's a "utopia" to believe COVID-19 can be completely eradicated and that the best outcome is to keep infections at a low, controllable level until a vaccine is developed.

Starting midnight Friday, anyone not wearing a mask in busy places like hospitals, banks and churches faces a fine of 300 euros ($366). Random testing at airports will increase from 600 to 1,000 a day, with emphasis on Cypriots returning from vacation. 

The maximum number of passengers on public transport is again being cut to half of the vehicle's capacity and police will enact a "zero tolerance" policy on businesses that don't conform to hygiene and social distancing rules.

Ioannou announced additional measures affecting the coastal town of Limassol, where most of the new infections have been registered. The measures, to last for three weeks, include the return of a 10-person limit at all social functions and a 75-person limit for indoor seating at bars and restaurants. That limit is double for outdoor seating.

Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades warned in a written statement that flouting these new restrictions would lead to even stricter measures that would have grave economic repercussions.

Divided Cyprus, with a population of around 870,000 people in the southern, internationally recognized part has registered 1,084 COVID-19 infections and 26 deaths.

RELATED

NICOSIA - A Greek activist who alleged sex trafficking rings are luring women and was tied to an alleged gang rape in Thessaloniki, sent Cypriot police a 47-page email with some 150 photos to back it up.

Top Stories

Associations

ASTORIA – The Pancyprian Choir of NY held its first meeting of 2022 and shared best wishes for the New Year with their annual cutting of the traditional vasilopita at Dionysos Taverna in Astoria on January 24.

Associations

BRONX, NY – In a festive atmosphere, the traditional cutting of the vasilopita was held by the Northern Chios Society of Pelineon Agia Markella in the community hall of Zoodohos Peghe Greek Orthodox Church in the Bronx on January 23.

Society

ATHENS – A major snow storm that had been predicted for days still caught residents in Greece offguard and the New Democracy government scrambling for answers as to why motorists were stuck for hours on major roads.

Video

Prosecutors in Floyd Killing Probe Use-of-Force Training

ST. PAUL, Minn — Prosecutors in the federal trial of three former Minneapolis police officers in George Floyd's killing probed the department's training on use of force, a key issue at the heart of charges that the officers violated Floyd's civil rights.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. abc@xyz.com

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.