The situation in Europe is still not under control. According to official statistics, 1.5 million people in Europe have already died as a result of coronavirus disease. In Austria alone, 13,592 new infections were recorded on Thursday. The number of intensive care patients also rose by 41 to 619. Above all, the highly contagious Delta variant is causing concern – all over Europe. France has therefore also announced increased border controls.
The Czech Republic even declared a state of emergency and has now imposed further protective measures. Among other things, all Christmas markets in the country will be closed and the consumption of alcohol in public will be prohibited, as Health Minister Adam Vojtech announced. President Milos Zeman also returned to the hospital just hours after his release. He tested positive for Covid-19.
Portugal has also decided to crack down on it. In spite of the high vaccination rate and the lower number of infections compared to other European countries, restrictions are also being introduced here. All air travelers who come into the country have to show a negative test. It is also compulsory to wear a mask indoors. In addition, completely immunized people have to show a negative test for visits to bars, nightclubs and discos.
But it’s not just the Delta version that causes headaches. It has now been announced that a new variant has broken out in South Africa. Great Britain responded to this. Travel from six southern African countries was banned. Specifically, these are South Africa, Namibia, Lesotho, Eswatini, Zimbabwe and Botswana. According to Health Minister Sajid Javid, the scientists are deeply concerned about the new variant, which is likely to be even more contagious than the Delta variant. The current vaccines, however, are not very effective. The situation in Germany is also dramatic. So you had to ask other EU countries for help because some clinics are overloaded. However, Germany is struggling with a very low vaccination rate of around 69 percent.
But Slovakia has also taken drastic measures and imposed a two-week lockdown on Thursday. The four-party coalition in Bratislava decided on Wednesday to close all catering establishments and those shops that are not needed for a basic supply of food and other essential goods for two weeks for the time being.
At the same time as the lockdown, the government decided on the so-called emergency, which applies for 90 days. This makes it possible to restrict the freedom of movement of the population. There is a curfew, from which, contrary to original plans, there are no exceptions for people who have been completely vaccinated against Covid-19. The way to work is still allowed. From Monday on, however, there will be compulsory tests at the workplace. The European Medicines Agency, EMA, recently approved Pfizer / BioNTech vaccination for children between the ages of five and eleven. This paved the way for vaccination in the age group in which the virus spreads rapidly.