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Coronavirus: Christmas events outdoors, stricter checks at airports likely

the lighting of the Christmas tree in Larnaca on Sunday night

Authorities will likely introduce stricter measures at airports and other points of entry into the Republic, including crossings, which will remain open, Health Minister Michalis Hadjipantelas said Monday.

Speaking after a meeting with the government advisory committee on Covid in light of the emergence of the Omicron variant, the minister said there was a proposal for Christmas events to be held outdoors with those attending, vaccinated or not, having to present a negative rapid antigen test that is not older than 48 hours.

“As regards the additional measures, we have agreed with the experts to have mandatory PCR tests at all airports,” he said. “Also, we will have PCR and rapid testing at all entries, ports and marinas, while measures at crossings will be beefed up.”

The crossings issue will be discussed with the interior ministry and the negotiating team in the next few days. The proposals will be presented to the cabinet on Wednesday.

Hadjipantelas stressed it did not mean they were closing crossings but making checks stricter.

“Certainly, for people who are not permanent residents in the Republic of Cyprus, the same checks as the ones that apply for everyone will apply at airports, like for example, the mandatory display of a PCR.”

Of Christmas events, the recommendation to the cabinet will be for them to be held outdoors and attendees to present a negative rapid antigen test that is not older than 48 hours. The test mandate would apply to vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals.

The cabinet will also look into the possibility of reintroducing work from home after it was raised by experts, the minister said.




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