The Netherlands government is likely to announce a three-week partial lockdown in the country amid rising Covid-19 cases in Europe.
Europe is once again seeing a hike in Covid-19 cases, as it accounts for more than half of the seven-day global average. Germany, The Netherlands, Norway, Austria are a few countries facing a fresh wave of Covid-19 cases.
As per the World Health Organisation, the deaths related to the coronavirus have increased by 10 per cent in Europe in the past seven days.
The Netherlands recorded a total of 16,364 positive cases, which is the highest number of cases recorded in the country until now, in the past 24 hours.
Citing government sources, Dutch broadcaster NOS has said that the country will be going under a three-week lockdown which would include the closure of restaurants, bars and nonessential stores by 7 pm. It would also ban fans from attending any sports events.
NOS further reported that the move, which would be announced on Friday, would come into effect from Saturday.
Netherlands Prime Minister Mark Rutte will be addressing the country at a press conference at 1800 GMT, likely announcing the measures. It has been reported that under the new guidelines, people would be urged to work from home but schools, cinema halls and theatres would remain open.
The Netherlands, which has recorded the highest number of cases on Thursday, has vaccinated 85 per cent of its population and had ended lockdown restrictions only at the end of September.
Austrian chancellor Alexander Schallenberg announced a lockdown on those who are unvaccinated against Covid-19 in the country, starting Monday.
Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg Friday said that the government would hold a call with the governors of the nine provinces of Austria on Sunday to decide the measures to be implemented in order to curb the surge of the Covid-19 virus.
Germany has decided to classify Austria as a high-risk area from Sunday onwards, German Health Minister Jens Spahn said. This would require people travelling from Austria to Germany to enter quarantine unless they have been vaccinated against Covid-19 or recovered from the virus.
As per the authorities, Austria has recorded more than 11,000 cases in the last 24 hours, which is the highest since the beginning of the pandemic. The country has vaccinated 65 per cent of it population, which is the lowest in Western Europe.
Germany is set to reintroduce free Covid-19 tests, which were started in March this year, as a measure against the rising Coronavirus cases in the country, said acting health minister Jens Spahn.
Spahn said that there was a need for strict measures to fight against the virus and the vaccinated or people recovered from the virus would require a negative Covid-19 certificate to enter public events.
Germany’s disease control centre, Robert Koch Institute, has urged citizens to avoid gatherings and reduce contacts.
Germany recorded the highest Covid-19 cases, 50,000, on Thursday and 48,640 on Friday.
Norway has offered booster shots to everyone above the age of 18 in the country.
Norway’s Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Stoere, said on Friday that all unvaccinated health personnel would be required to get tested twice a week and would be required to wear masks.
Health Minister Ingvild Kjerkol said that booster shots would be a better protection against the Covid-19 virus and would decrease the probability of the virus spreading.
More than 87 per cent of the population above the age of 18 has been vaccinated in the country, according to official figures.
Declaring Covid-19 “a socially critical disease” again amid an increase in Coronavirus cases, Denmark reintroduced digital passes.
The passes should be used for a month to enter nightclubs, cafes, party buses and indoor restaurants. While the passes were first introduced on July 1, they were removed on September 10, when the cases had reduced in the country.