A nationwide lockdown for all residents has been in force since today in Austria. The decision to introduce the blockade is explained by the government with record increases in the number of coronavirus infections. The lockdown will last for at least 10 days, and may be extended to 20 days if necessary.
I am sorry to take such drastic measures – said on Friday to the vaccinated chancellor Alexander Schallenberg on the state television ORF.
Residents will only be allowed to leave their homes in certain casessuch as going out for groceries, playing sports or visiting a doctor. Schools and kindergartens will remain open, however, the authorities asked the parents to leave their children at home as much as possible. Office workers are recommended to work remotely. Christmas markets were canceled and restaurants were closed.
After the lockdown expires, the restrictions will still apply to unvaccinated people. Additionally, the government announced that from February 2022, vaccination against Covid-19 will be compulsory.
About 40,000 people demonstrated against the government’s decisions on Saturday in the streets of Vienna. people, including representatives of parties and far-right groups, the local police said.
The lockdown began in Austria at a time when the average daily number of deaths from SARS-CoV-2 has tripled in recent weeks. Some hospitals are reporting that their intensive care units are on the verge of maximum occupancy.
According to recent data from Johns Hopkins University, in Austria, less than 66 percent. residents are fully vaccinated against Covid-19. This, the AP notes, is one of the lowest vaccination rates among Western European countries.