THESSALONIKI — "While the figures show that even now Greece is among the countries with a better epidemiological picture, the coronavirus cases are showing exponential growth in Greece," government spokesperson Stelios Petsas said, starting his briefing to the press on Monday. "The condition in Thessaloniki, in some neighbouring regions, is extremely serious for public health. The health minister, Vassilis Kikilias, this morning visited the city, for which an emergency plan has been set in motion," he said.
"The prime minister spoke on the phone with Health Minister Vassilis Kikilias and decided to impose a local lockdown in the regions of Thessaloniki and Serres from 06:00 on Tuesday and for the next 15 days," Petsas said.
As he explained, contrary to last March's lockdown, schools will remain open while the sending of SMS for movements outside the home will be applied again, for the same reasons as in March. Additionally, there will be a curfew from 21:00 until 05:00 in the morning, with only movements for reasons of health or work excepted.
In this context, all non-essential domestic and international flights to Thessaloniki's Makedonia airport will be prohibited.
During the first lockdown there was open defiance in Thessaloniki where people would keep strolling along the famous waterfront promenade despite a police presence that couldn't keep them off.
Thessaloniki, Serres lockdown hurts us all, but was deemed necessary, Tzitzikostas says
Τhe local governor of Central Macedonia, Apostolos Tzitzikostas, said on Monday that the lockdown in Thessaloniki and Serres "hurts us all, but was deemed necessary by epidemiologists to preserve the health of all of us."
"We urgently need an Emergency Plan to save our economy to get out of this crisis. We have shown in the past that together we can overcome any difficulty. The time has come to prove it again," stressed Tzitzikostas. He offered assurances that the Region of Central Macedonia will continue to be firmly by the side of citizens and local businesses, just as it was throughout the previous period.