In order to contain the sharply increasing number of coronavirus infections, Austria will soon enter a lockdown for the unvaccinated. “We are taking this step now,” Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg confirmed in Innsbruck on Friday.
Monday is already today in two areas. In Salzburg and Upper Austria, lockdown will start on Monday for the unvaccinated. This was announced by Austrian Health Minister Wolfgang Mokstein on Friday. But it turns out that this is not enough. “The goal is clear: We want to give the green light on Sunday for a national shutdown of people who have not been vaccinated,” Chancellor Schallenberg said. He did not say an exact timing for the introduction of the lockdown, but Austrian media wrote that it was likely to come into effect on Wednesday.
It should also become clear on Sunday how strict that measure will be. The same rules will likely apply as during the third Austrian lockdown. This means that unvaccinated people will only be allowed to leave the house to meet their daily needs, to work or to seek medical help. They can also go out for a walk or exercise. For example, it is forbidden to visit the hairdresser. Also, unvaccinated people are not allowed to go to the restaurant. It is not currently clear how long the lockdown will last for unvaccinated people.
There will also be stricter rules regarding the vaccination of Austrians. For example, they have to wear mouth masks again in more places. Many events have also been cancelled.
Since last Monday, under the so-called 2G rule, only Corona patients were allowed to be vaccinated or cured in Austria in cafes, restaurants, hairdressers and events with more than 25 people. In addition, the 3G rule has also been in place since the beginning of November, which obliges unvaccinated employees to regularly submit a negative test.
These measures have led to a sharp increase in the number of vaccinations in recent days, but in the meantime, the number of infections also continues to peak. On Friday, nearly 11,800 infections were reported within 24 hours. “We need to tighten the screws a little more,” Schallenberg concluded. However, according to the chancellor, vaccinated people cannot be asked to go back into lockdown for citizens who don’t want a bullet.
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