Dubai, United Arab Emirates (CNN) – Austrian Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg announced on Friday that his country will return to general closure, and plans to be the first European country to impose mandatory vaccination on those who qualify for it. Corona due to the worsening of the “Covid-19” crisis. nation-wide.
Schallenberg said his government is seeking to introduce vaccination from February 1 and that the number of fully vaccinated people in Austria is around 65%, which is among the lowest registered figures in the EU.
Schallenberg indicated at a press conference in Vienna on Friday that the national general closure, the first in Europe for this autumn, begins on Monday and lasts for a minimum of ten days and can be extended by another ten days.
This step comes a few days after Austria took an unprecedented decision in Europe to impose closure measures on non-vaccinated people aged 12 and over who can only leave their homes for a few specific reasons. Police were also tasked with conducting surprise searches in public places.
Austrian Health Minister Wolfgang Mokstein said on Friday that schools and kindergartens will remain open during the next public closure period.
Schallenberg added that it is up to parents to decide not to send their children to school if they choose, because “there is always a danger to any family.” Schools and kindergartens were closed in Austria during the first general closure due to the Corona pandemic.
Mukstein stressed the need to wear FFP2 protective masks inside all enclosed spaces and that employees can request to work remotely from home if possible.
The Minister of Health explained that when the general closure ends, the closure measures aimed at unvaccinated Austrians will remain in force, adding that they will make any decision to avoid the “fifth wave”.
On Thursday, Germany announced its plans to impose “Covid-19” measures on all those who did not receive the vaccine, with the aim of reducing the record rates recorded in the middle of the fourth “Covid-19” wave, which it is testing .
The outgoing German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, described the country’s reality as a result of “Covid-19” as “catastrophic” and “very worrying”, during a press conference held on Thursday, after a meeting between rulers of the 16 federal states and focused on strict preventive measures for “Covid-19”. -19 “, which is supposed to be taken.
Merkel also warned that beds in the intensive care unit were quickly filling up, adding that “the time has come to take action.”