Friday, July 12, 2024
 
 

Belgium in lockdown until April 5

EPA-EFE/FREDERIC SIERAKOWSKI / POOL
Belgian Prime Minister Sophie Wilmes gives a speech at the Parliament during an extraordinary plenary session to present her general politics plan in Brussels, Belgium, 17 March 2020.

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A few hours after Sophie Wilmès’ emergency government was sworn in by King Philippe, the Prime Minister announced that as of Wednesday 11am GMT, Belgium will enter a lockdown, as the number of COVID-19 cases in the country exceeded 1,200.
Although the “far-reaching” measures taken by Belgium’s National Security Council (CNS) do not foresee an absolute lockdown and the country’s borders will remain open, public life will be significantly affected.
Public gatherings have been banned and people will only be allowed to go out for supermarkets, pharmacies, post offices, banks, medical appointments and physical activity – however if in pairs, they must be living under the same roof.
Companies were called upon to schedule teleworking, however employees will be allowed to go to work in cases where remote working is not possible.
Police will ensure the lockdown is enforced and companies that do not comply with the extraordinary measures will face hefty fines.
Non-essential travelling abroad has been prohibited and flights to Belgium have also been cancelled.
“The situation has evolved and forced us to take severe measures to stem the spread of the virus,” Wilmès said on Tuesday evening, urging citizens to stay at home and “respect the rules.”

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