Minister says Ireland to impose nationwide COVID-19 curbs
October 19, 2020
World

Minister says Ireland to impose nationwide COVID-19 curbs on Monday

DUBLIN (IRELAND) – Ireland will bring in “decisive” nationwide COVID-19 restrictions on Monday, however, it will not be reintroducing the kind of lockdown imposed earlier this year, Higher Education Minister Simon Harris said on Sunday.

On Saturday, Ireland broke its record for the number of cases recorded in a single day for the fourth time in a week. It brought cases per 100,000 people in the past 14 days to 232, monitored by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control.

Harris, who was the health minister during one of Europe’s strictest lockdowns from the end of March to mid-May, told national broadcaster RTE, “The government will act tomorrow, the action will be decisive and it will be nationwide action.”

“Tomorrow we will have to bring in more restrictions. Level 3 has not worked … I don’t want to be pedantic about the phrase lockdown but I don’t think that’s exactly where we’re going but there will certainly be more restrictions.”

The government moved three counties on its open border with Northern Ireland to Level 4 of its five-step framework on Wednesday. The other 23 counties are on Level 3, banning all indoor restaurant dining.

“In relation to businesses, we’re trying to get the balance right here. We want to keep as much open as we can but we can’t prolong the inevitable either … What government is trying to do is try to find that landing spot,” Harris said.

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