Austria, affected by an outbreak of the coronavirus epidemic, enters this Monday, November 22 again in strict confinement, the fourth in the country since the start of the health crisis and a first in Western Europe since last spring.
In Austria, the population is re-fining for the 4th time since the start of the epidemic. The restrictions are similar to those imposed to deal with the epidemic before the massive deployment of Covid-19 vaccines.
For an initial period of 10 days, most of the outings – restaurants, bars, theaters, etc. – and non-essential businesses will be closed. This re-containment could last up to 20 days, the government said.
The restrictions come into force even as the Christmas markets, important tourist vectors, had just opened.
Initially affected by the measures, the ski lifts on the ski slopes will remain open to people vaccinated against Covid-19.
The hotels are prohibited from welcoming tourists, excluding those who started their stay before the reconfinement.
“This is a situation which requires us to react now,” Health Minister Wolfgang Mueckstein said on television on Sunday evening.
The daily number of coronavirus infections continued to rise last week, to a higher peak than a year ago, despite restrictions on people who have not been vaccinated against Covid-19.
While Austria’s vaccination rate is lower than in neighboring countries, the Conservative government announced on Friday that vaccination would be compulsory as of February 1 – a step very few countries have taken.