Omicron variant: European nation bans Christmas markets, public consuming in bid to fight COVID-19 wave
1000’s of protesters gathered in Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic, to protest new COVID-19 restrictions geared toward combatting the unfold of the brand new omicron variant. Amongst different issues, the Czech authorities banned the favored Christmas markets and any public consumption of alcohol, comparable to mulled wine, which Czechs and guests usually drink at such markets.
“The federal government’s determination to abolish the out of doors Christmas markets actually from each day is outrageous for all market operators and the stallholders themselves, who usually purchased the products on credit score,” Prague Mayor Zdeněk Hřib stated on Fb, in keeping with a translation from expats.cz. “It is unbelievable that the stalls have been constructed and now should be torn down once more. The federal government should pay sufficient monetary compensation to all stallholders.”
CZECH PROTESTERS DEMAND ‘FREEDOM’ AS NEW COVID RESTRICTIONS GO INTO EFFECT FOR THE UNVACCINATED
The Czech authorities mandated Thursday that Christmas markets – which had solely simply opened – shut down at 6 p.m. on Friday. It additionally banned the consumption of alcohol in public, clamping down on a preferred exercise on the markets, the consumption of mulled wine and grilled sausages. Distributors can nonetheless promote Christmas bushes and contemporary carp on the road, and markets that keep open all yr can stay open, as effectively, though foods and drinks bought there can’t be consumed on the spot.
The federal government declared a 30-day state of emergency, closing the Christmas markets and mandating that bars, eating places, nightclubs, discotheques, and casinos shut at 10 p.m.
1000’s took to the streets in Prague to protest the brand new restrictions, marking the third protest within the final two weeks. In accordance with the Related Press, individuals didn’t put on face coverings or comply with social distancing guidelines. In addition they drank beer in public, in violation of the ban.
Protesters chanted “Freedom!” and “We have had sufficient!” whereas holding banners expressing opposition to vaccine mandates, comparable to “My physique my selection.”
Police reportedly declined to intervene.
Market organizing firm Taiko additionally condemned the choice to shut the markets.
“We’re shocked and we’re determined,” Taiko spokeswoman Hana Tietze instructed Pražská Drbna. “We’re shocked that the shops will stay open, however the markets outdoors will shut.”
“We have now year-round prices for storage and repairs of stalls. We have employed some staff, so we’ll name for compensation,” Tietze added.
The nation has set repeated data in new day by day infections, hitting a document excessive of virtually 28,000 circumstances on Thursday. The an infection fee was at 1,191 new circumstances per 100,000 residents over the previous seven days. Total, the nation of 10.7 million has registered over 2.1 million circumstances with 32,837 COVID-related deaths. It has decrease vaccination charges than many different EU nations.
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Different new restrictions restrict the variety of spectators at cultural and sports activities occasions to 1,000 individuals who have been vaccinated or have recovered from COVID-19, or solely 100 guests, down from 1,000.
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