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Coronavirus: Although some measures relaxed ministry reminds mask mandate still in place

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File photo: Larnaca airport

The health ministry on Monday warned the public that the indoor mask mandate, including their use at airports, still stands except for children under 12.

“The obligation to use a mask indoors has been suspended since May 15, 2022, only for children under 12 years old,” the ministry said.

It is also warned that the use of mask was mandatory at airports and violators would be fined €300.

“The European recommendations for suspending the obligation to use a mask will be evaluated at a later stage by the ministry of health in consultation with the scientific advisory committee,” it added.

Last week, The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) said they were dropping all mask requirements at airports and on airlines from Monday this week.

However, they cautioned that rules for masks in particular would continue to vary by airline. For example, flights to or from a destination where mask-wearing is still required on public transport should continue to encourage mask wearing.

The two organisations said the update of the joint aviation health safety protocol took account of the latest developments in the pandemic, in particular the levels of vaccination and naturally acquired immunity, and the accompanying lifting of restrictions in a growing number of European countries.

As far as airlines were concerned, they said, passengers should behave responsibly and respect the choices of others around them “and a passenger who is coughing and sneezing should strongly consider wearing a face mask, for the reassurance of those seated nearby”.

Also, the rules and requirements of departure and destination states should be respected and applied consistently, and travel operators should take care to inform passengers of any required measures in a timely manner, they said.

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