Greece’s health minister said on Wednesday that music would be banned in all commercial venues for New Year’s celebrations under new restrictions announced in response to an increase in COVID-19 infections fueled by the omicron variant.
The restrictions, originally scheduled to take effect on Jan.3, will begin early Thursday after the daily number of infections reached nearly 22,000 on Tuesday, more than double the record number reported the day before.
“Omicron is now the dominant variant in terms of new infections,” Health Minister Thanos Plevris said in a live briefing.
Much of the omicron remains unknown, including whether it causes more or less severe disease.
Greek measures include the mandatory use of high-protection masks in supermarkets and on public transport, schedule changes and additional work-from-home orders for government employees, and strict capacity limits on sites sportsmen.
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Entertainment venues will close at midnight starting Thursday, but will be allowed to stay open until 2 a.m. for New Years Eve.
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