Albania unveils plan to gradually lift anti-virus lockdown

Source: Xinhua| 2020-04-23 04:30:26|Editor: huaxia

TIRANA, April 22 (Xinhua) -- Albania's Minister of Health and Social Protection Ogerta Manastirliu on Wednesday unveiled the government's plan to ease the anti-coronavirus measures gradually, starting next week.

Via a video message posted on Facebook, Manastirliu declared that various businesses, such as the trade of clothes, shoes, furniture, electronic equipment, will be allowed to reopen.

She added that households will be able to stay out of home for up to 2 hours and 30 minutes, compared with 90 minutes for the moment.

Inter-city transport via taxi with only one passenger will also be permitted.

The minister stressed that the plan is based on epidemiological criteria, hospital capacity and the necessary resources to control and monitor the situation.

"The assessment of each step taken will be analyzed every two weeks," she said. "In case we do not have stable indicators of the epidemic situation, the plan also provides for the return of harsh measures."

Since mid-March, the Albanian government has imposed some of the toughest quarantine measures compared to other neighboring countries.

Residents are allowed to leave their homes for 90 minutes only each day after getting permission by using the government's online "e-Albania" platform or sending a text message to a designated number.

A strict curfew has been put in place nationwide from 5 a.m. to 1 p.m. local time from Mondays to Saturdays. On Sundays, citizens are completely prohibited from going out.

On Wednesday, Albania health authorities reported 25 new positive coronavirus cases, bringing the total to 634, with 356 recoveries and 27 fatalities. Enditem