NEWS

Calls for compliance with health measures, arrests for anti-maskers

PENNY BOULOUTZA, IOANNA MANDROU

TAGS: Coronavirus

Government officials on Tuesday appealed to the public to observe restrictions aimed at containing the spread of the coronavirus as a top prosecutor called for the arrest of individuals who refuse to wear a face mask where required and incite others to do the same. 

A lockdown for Attica can be avoided if existing measures are enforced, Deputy Civil Protection Minister Nikos Hardalias said, noting however that the situation in central Athens where several instances of overcrowding have been reported is “critical.”

“Instead of wasting our energy on scenarios about lockdowns, let’s try and get through this phase successfully,” he said. A localized lockdown for Attica will be “the final solution” if other measures do not bear fruit, he said. 

An additional measure heralded on Tuesday was the suspension of all outdoor theatrical performances starting Thursday. 

Health authorities announced 346 new Covid-19 infections, bringing the nationwide total to 15,928. Another eight patients died, bringing the toll to 352. 

Meanwhile a Supreme Court prosecutor issued a circular advocating the arrest of individuals who refuse to wear a mask in violation of public health safety rules or who encourage others to do so.

Vassilis Pliotas argued that individuals who challenge expert recommendations and legislation on the use of face coverings to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus are putting the health of the public at risk. The stricter treatment of individuals who violate health rules is mandated by the “law of necessity,” he said.

In a related development, a study carried out by scientists at the University of Athens has indicated that only a tiny fraction of the Greek population has developed immunity to Covid-19. Specifically, out of 2,500 samples of plasma taken from participants during the June-July period, only 25 (or 1 percent) were found to have antibodies.

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