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Coronavirus: no handshakes, kissing, hugging or dancing at weddings or christenings

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The health ministry on Saturday expanded on the protocols for weddings and christenings limiting the time for congratulatory greetings and forbidding handshakes or greeting with a kiss or a hug, plus no dancing.

According to the expanded protocols that will remain in force until January 15, which also includes an extension on mask wearing and limiting crowd sizes, the maximum number of guests at a wedding or christening dinner will remain at 350 while people at the reception cannot exceed 250 per hour.

There should be a distance of 3sqm between guests at indoor events, and 2sqm if the event is outdoors regardless of the square footage of the property.

“During the congratulations and the cocktail, the number of attendees per hour must not exceed 250 people. For example, if the total number of invitees is 1,000, then the minimum time for congratulations and cocktails must be four hours,” the ministry said.

“The usual greeting procedure such as a kiss or handshake is not allowed,” it added. Under the mask decree, they must be worn at large indoor events.

The couple or the parents of the baby are also obliged to submit a list of those invited to facilitate tracking in case one of the guests later turns up positive, the ministry said.

The persons in charge of the premises must ensure that there is adequate natural ventilation for indoor events.

“Tables should be placed in such a way as to avoid overcrowding and crowding of guests and to ensure physical distancing,” the announcement said.

“To avoid congregating, there should be no pre-determined space for dancing at the event.”

Also, the person in charge of the premises must place antiseptic around the venue.

During the church part of the event, existing protocols on distancing and mask wearing apply.

Meanwhile 13 businesses and seven individuals were booked for violating coronavirus protocols in the last 24 hours, police said on Saturday.

According to police, officers conducted 683 checks during the past day.

During 59 checks in Nicosia, three businesses were booked, while out of 179 checks in Limassol seven businesses were booked.

In Larnaca, two businesses and two individuals were booked during 165 checks, while in Famagusta one business and five individuals were booked from 155 checks.

Fifty checks were conducted in Paphos and police did not book anyone.

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