Photo: BIRN.

Coronavirus measures lifted in Kosovo

Kosovo’s land borders will reopen on Monday, as will nurseries, cafes, bars, restaurants and shopping malls, after the incumbent government repealed its decisions enforcing restrictions to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

Acting Prime Minister Albin Kurti and acting Minister of Health Arben Vitia announced on Sunday evening that measures to restrict the spread of coronavirus had been lifted. The announcement came after a meeting of the incumbent government, in which it repealed its decisions from March 13 and March 26. 

The decision will reopen Kosovo’s land borders for the first time in over two months, although according to Kurti entrants to Kosovo will be subject to medical checks administered by the Central Family Medicine Centre. Vitia added that arrivals to Kosovo from abroad without a recent test confirming they are not carrying coronavirus will have to self-isolate on entering Kosovo. 

“All persons who have a negative test not older than four days, are not subject to isolation procedures,” the minister said. “Meanwhile, those who do not have such a test, will have to self-isolate for seven days.” He added that the situation regarding flights into the country will be assessed in one week’s time, and a decision made following the assessment. 

The enforced closure of cafes, bars, shopping malls, taxi services and restaurants has been abolished, as have regulations on the operation of pharmacies. Nurseries for children under five years old will be permitted to open from Monday, while Vitia also recommended the opening of schools from June 15. 

Kurti thanked citizens for respecting the government’s decisions and following the National Institute of Public Health’s guidelines, “even when they were rigorous.” Vitia added that the danger is not over yet for Kosovo, as with no vaccine for COVID-19, the country was “undoubtedly in danger of other waves of infections.”

As of May 30, there were 199 active cases of coronavirus in Kosovo. Since testing began on February 8, there have been 1,070 cases confirmed, of which 841 patients are confirmed to have fully recovered, while 30 patients that tested positive for the virus have died. 

On Sunday, Salih Ahmeti, the head of the Infectious Disease Clinic in Prishtina, told press agency Kosovapress that there were 10 patients suffering from COVID-19 at the clinic, with three in a critical condition.

31/05/2020 - 19:56

31 May 2020 - 19:56

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