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Cyprus

Coronavirus: beach visits probably in, crossings and airports out for now

The possibility of people being able to go swimming in the sea was among the issues coronavirus advisors discussed recently, while crossings and airports were not expected to open soon, an expert said on Thursday.

The cabinet is expected next week to announce a relaxation of the restrictive measures currently in place to contain the spread of Covid-19, mainly allowing some businesses to open and easing of movement.

According to professor of microbiology and molecular virology at the University of Nicosia Medical School, Petros Karayiannis, plans have been drawn up to tackle a possible increase in cases as a result of the relaxation.

Karayiannis, who is also a member of the health ministry’s advisory committee on coronavirus, told the Cyprus News Agency that the committee was concerned a rise would occur.

He expressed hope that by the time measures begin to be eased, at the beginning of May, there would not be new cases every day.

“I don’t think there will be a problem and if there is, it will be sporadic, here and there and we would be able to suppress it in time,” Karayiannis said.

Karayiannis also said that at the meeting of the advisory committee with President Nicos Anastasiades earlier this week, the subject of allowing people to go the beach was discussed.

“The virus is not transmitted in the sea,” Karayiannis said, adding that the issue would be people gathering on the beach.

“The only thing we need to pay attention to is crowds, which can be avoided if people keep their distance.”

He also said that municipalities need to properly disinfect beach loungers.

According to Karayiannis, experts are also concerned by the opening of the crossings and airports.

“I believe that restrictions at crossings will remain until all of us are done with the coronavirus,” Karayiannis said.

He said that airports will open at a much later stage.

“Perhaps we will have to check visitors and from which countries they arrive,” he said, adding that this would be looked into by the committee in detail.

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