the unvaccinated, targets of new restrictive measures in Europe | Latest News Headlines

the unvaccinated, targets of new restrictive measures in Europe
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Faced with the fifth wave of Covid-19 which is increasingly raging, several countries of the European Union, including Austria, the Netherlands and Germany, have put in place restrictive measures for unvaccinated people . France 24 takes stock.

Will winter coincide with new confinements for European populations? Despite the vaccination, a wind of concern is blowing over Europe, with an increase in Covid-19 contamination which is spreading on the continent and restrictive measures which are making a comeback, in particular for unvaccinated people.

Austria became, Monday, November 15, the first country in the European Union (EU) to confine people not vaccinated against Covid-19 and began to vaccinate children from 5 years old. A measure which “is already bearing fruit”, according to Austrian Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg, citing “the massive increase in registrations in vaccination centers”.

According to official statistics, nearly half a million people received a dose last week in the central European country, including 128,813 for the first time.

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To stop the “vicious circle” of the spread of the virus and boost the “disgracefully low” vaccination rate of its population (65% to date), Austria is using all means.

Since November 15, people over 12 years old who are not immune after catching Covid-19 or who are not vaccinated over 12 years old, i.e. two million inhabitants, have not been allowed to leave their homes except for shopping, sports or for medical care. Offenders incur a fine of 500 euros.

Incidence rate per 1 million inhabitants of EU countries and UK

Faced with the rebound, France has, for its part, also reinstated the wearing of compulsory masks in primary school, but is not currently considering re-containment, including for unvaccinated people.

“There is absolutely no confinement that is planned today, neither near nor far,” assured, Tuesday, November 16, on France Inter, government spokesman Gabriel Attal, while specifying, as he had already done Saturday, that “should never exclude anything in principle” in this health crisis.

“Today, there is no reason to believe” that the end-of-year celebrations are tarnished by gauges as in 2020, but “the immunity conferred by the vaccine must continue and therefore that eligible French people do their vaccination booster, ”he said. People over 65 who have not had their vaccination booster by December 15 will then lose the benefit of their health pass.

Partial confinement in the Netherlands

In the Netherlands, Prime Minister Mark Rutte announced, Friday, November 12, the reintroduction of partial confinement with a series of health restrictions, affecting in particular the catering sector. Bars and restaurants, where health passes are required, must close at 8 p.m., at least until December 4, while non-essential businesses must close at 6 p.m. The government could deny unvaccinated people access to bars and restaurants and places of culture and recreation. The subject is to be debated next week in Parliament.

In Germany, where the incidence rate of the Covid-19 epidemic has reached its highest level since the start of the pandemic, with 303 infections per 100,000 inhabitants, according to data released on Monday, the three parties currently negotiating the formation of a government coalition plan to put in place new measures to stem the spread of the virus.

A massive return to telework is clearly in the pipeline, except “compelling professional reason” to come to the office. The rule of 3G (vaccinated, cured or tested) should also apply in public transport, “including school transport and taxis”, according to the coalition project, consulted by AFP. Applying this measure would prove extremely complex, however, warns the association of German municipalities.

Vaccination rate of the population of EU countries and the United Kingdom

The Länder must also be able to introduce new restrictions on contact in public and private places, specifically targeting the unvaccinated. An SPD official spoke of the prospect of “virtual confinement of the unvaccinated”, even if there is no question of controlling their movements. In Berlin, since Monday, for example, only people vaccinated or cured can now access bars, restaurants, gyms and hairdressing salons.

The measures will be submitted to the German Parliament on Thursday, as Social Democrats from the SPD, Greens and Liberals from the FDP finalize their “coalition contract”, with the aim of officially appointing Olaf Scholz to the chancellery in the week of December 6.

Vaccination or dismissal in Latvia

In Latvia, employers will now be able to separate members of their staff refusing vaccination against Covid-19, under new regulations that came into force on Monday.

Elected politicians who do not have a vaccination certificate or proof of recovery from this disease will also be excluded from their duties and will not receive any remuneration until they are vaccinated.

The Latvian government has also tightened the rules for shopping malls over 1,500 m2, forbidden to non-vaccinated.

Finally, in Greece, the government has imposed for ten days the health pass on restaurants and outdoor cafes and doubled the fines for professionals in the sector who do not comply with the measures, they now amount to 5,000 euros.

With AFP and Reuters

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