Greece is not a police state and the government is relying on the “power of persuasion” to convince citizens that restricting their movements over the Easter holiday in particular is the best way to contain the spread of the new coronavirus, spokesman Stelios Petsas said on Tuesday.
“The citizen understands that this is an unprecedented situation, something we have never experienced before. Everyone understands that we are living in a completely different framework right now. We will not be doing what we do every other year this year,” Petsas said in comments to Open TV.
“We won’t be going to our churches, unfortunately, but it is not our faith that is being tested. What is being tested is our personal sense of responsibility and our collective maturity,” he said, echoing concerns of widespread violations of restrictions during the Easter holiday this weekend, the biggest event on the Greek Orthodox calendar. “Visits to friends, neighbors or relatives are not foreseen.”
Petsas said that what the government is trying to safeguard with its admonitions against breaking self-containment rules is “what has taken so much effort over the past few weeks to gain so that we may be in a position at the end of April to come up with a plan for a gradual and slow return to normalcy.”