Europe celebrates the end of street masks and Australia and South Africa return to strict restrictions

Europe has advanced in the measures of deconfinement, with Spain, Italy, France and Greece decreeing the end of the use of masks in the street. However, several countries in Africa, Asia and Australia were forced to resume restrictions, due to the increase in cases caused by the Delta variant.

A Spain celebrates the end of the mandatory use of masks in outdoor spaces, but remains mandatory on public transport and large outdoor events. However, the country has again demanded that British tourists who are not vaccinated and wish to travel to the Balearic Islands be tested negative for covid-19.

On Italy, masks are no longer mandatory in open spaces since this Monday in all regions of the country that are at a lower risk of contagion, being only necessary in closed places and on public transport.

Roberto Speranza, Italy’s Health Minister, said that “it is a good day because the whole country can afford to have a little more freedom, but we must continue on the path of prudence and caution”.

A France it’s at Greece also decreed the end of the use of masks abroad. According to Vana Papaevaggelou, member of the Greek scientific committee responsible for containing the covid-19 pandemic, “the number of intubated people and deaths is decreasing every day and the current situation is encouraging”, which also meant the end of the curfew in the country, previously announced

In France, clubs will reopen from the 9th of July with a maximum capacity of 75% and with presentation of a health pass, it is not necessary to wear a mask inside the establishments.

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Despite the most favorable measures in Europe, countries such as Spain, Italy, France or the United Kingdom are seeing an increase in the number of cases derived from the Delta variant, considered one of the most contagious, with the United Kingdom having registered the maximum number of cases since the end of January, with 22,868 new covid-19 cases on Monday.

The European Center for Disease Control warns that the variant will be responsible, by the end of August, for 90% of all infections in Europe.

Delta variant causes resumption of constraints

The number of cases of people infected with the Delta variant has been increasing, leading several countries to re-enact more stringent measures to combat the new variant, as is the case with Australia.

The country’s largest city, Sydney, began a two-week confinement on Saturday, after registering an increase of 110 cases in the past two weeks. The confinement was extended throughout the metropolitan area and neighboring regions, being only possible to leave the house to carry out essential tasks, medical appointments or physical exercise. Borders, commerce and catering were closed by the Australian authorities.

too South Africa is under more restrictive measures, with the metropolitan areas of Pretoria and Johannesburg being the most affected, accounting for around 60% of all new infections in the country. The country’s President raised the alert state to the second highest level on Sunday, at a time when hospitals are beginning to reach the limit.

In Israel, the mandatory use of masks, in closed places, was reinstated on Friday, at a time when most people are already vaccinated. Israeli authorities have also advised the use of masks outdoors, where there is a greater gathering of people.

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