No new Covid restrictions, Romania’s president says, but warns the virus is still dangerous

Foto: INQUAM/Octav Ganea

Romania’s president said authorities won’t tighten coronavirus-related restrictions over the holiday period but warned that the virus hadn’t gone away, as cases continued to drop but deaths remained high.

„The pandemic is unfortunately with us, even if the number of infections goes down. Dear Romanians, protect yourselves and protect the others,” said President Klaus Iohannis on Thursday.

” This is not a game. We won’t introduce new restrictions over the holiday, but the current restrictions will remain. They are obligatory, not optional.

Romania reported 4,3190 cases on Christmas Eve of which more than one-fourth were in the capital. The positivity rate fell to a two-month low of 13% after 27,600  tests were carried out.

Some 146 patients with Covid-19 succumbed to the virus in the past 24 hours and 1,230 patients were seriously ill and needing intensive care treatment.

With the high number of deaths in mind, the president urged Romanians to be careful about spreading the virus.

“During the holidays, look after yourselves, and those you care about. Respect the restrictions,” he said.

President Iohannis met the new Prime Minister Florin Citu, deputy Prime Minister Dan Barna Defense Minister Nicolae Ciuca, Health Minister Vlad Voiculescu, Interior Minister Lucian Bode, and the head of the emergency situations, Raed Arafat.

Romania extended a state of alert by a month on Dec. 10. Under current restrictions, shops have to close by 9pm and restaurants are closed, except those with outdoor seating. Cinemas and theaters are also closed.


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