The Greek government is expected next week to decide on extending the current lockdown as rising coronavirus infections make the original December 1 target for easing restrictions increasingly elusive.
“December 1 no longer looks like a realistic target,” government spokesman Stelios Petsas told state broadcaster ERT on Friday morning, a day before Greece wrapped up its second week in a nationwide lockdown that includes restrictions on public movement and economic activity.
“We never spoke of a specific timeline, but of a gradual return in phases to some form of normalcy within December. Unfortunately, the first week of the lockdown was somewhat relaxed,” he said, pointing to the continued steep rise in infections across the country.
“We will see how we will design the gradual easing of measures over the course of next week… though at this stage the battle is about containing the coronavirus,” Petsas said.
The Greek government introduced a three-week lockdown on November 7 in the hopes of being able to reopen trade and other activities ahead of the Christmas holidays, though restrictions have not delivered the desired results so far.