Greece Loosens ‘Red Area’ Covid Rules for Vaccinated People
Greece will, starting on Saturday, begin a two-week test of lifting some pandemic restrictions in regions where coronavirus cases have been the highest — but for the most part, only vaccinated people will be able to enjoy the heightened freedom.
The restrictions being lifted — notably a curfew from 1 a.m. to 6 a.m. and a ban on music in bars and restaurants — were imposed last month in “red areas” across much of the country’s north and parts of its center, as a way to fight a fourth wave of the virus.
But unvaccinated people who cannot prove that they recently recovered from Covid remain barred from indoor venues like bars, cafes and restaurants.
The trial is part of a drive to grant greater freedoms to people who are fully vaccinated against the virus and to encourage a large unvaccinated population to get shots. In another example, unvaccinated workers who need to prove their Covid status have to undergo regular coronavirus tests at their own expense.
“The philosophy is not that some people are being favored over others,” the Greek health minister, Thanasis Plevris, said at a news conference on Wednesday. “The measures for the unvaccinated are adequate. Those who are vaccinated can have greater freedoms.”