The President of the Republic, Nikos Anastasiadis, is giving a speech on the decisions of the Council of Ministers in relation to the lifting of the restrictive measures imposed.
The distance that remains is great, but the progress that is being made allows us to implement the phases of gradual easing of the measures, said the President of the Republic.
The first two phases of the relaxation of the restrictive measures were announced in a speech by the President of the Republic. The first phase starts on the 4th and the second on the 21st of May. Specifically: From May 4, restrictions will be lifted in the construction sector and all retail businesses except shopping malls. Travel and tourist offices are reopening
The first two phases of the implementation of the strategy for the gradual lifting of the restrictions, start on May 4, 2020 and end on June 8, 2020. Everything will depend and are completely interwoven with the epidemiological course.
The measures will take effect on May 4
From May 4, full operation of the Public and wider Public Sector, with the return of all employees to their jobs. Excluded are those who fall into vulnerable groups as defined in the new revised list published by the Ministry of Health.
(i) Employees who are responsible for the care of children up to 15 years of age will be entitled to leave until the reopening of public and private schools. It is understood that during their absence they are obliged to perform any duties assigned to them by the teleworking method.
(ii) The same method will be used by people who belong to vulnerable groups and will not return to work.
iii) With the return of civil servants, it is possible for the courts to function, in accordance with decisions to be taken by the Supreme Court.
C. Department of Education.
(i) Giving priority to the need for adequate preparation of graduates of public and private secondary schools, it was decided to return them to the school units from 11 May. The Minister of Education, Culture, Sports and Youth will make relevant announcements, as well as reports on all other levels of education. It is understood that the tele-education will continue until the full reopening of the school units.
D. Public Health.
As part of the normalization of the operation of public and private hospitals, from May 4, the restrictions will be partially lifted based on the instructions of the Ministry of Health and the dental centers will be fully reopened.
E. Public Freedom.
With regard to individual liberties and the restrictive measures taken, the following were decided:
(i) Increase the number of Permission to three per day by sending a text message (SMS). The curfew on traffic from 10 pm to 6 am remains in force.
(ii) From May 4, prayers are allowed in churches, mosques and other places of worship, meaning that no more than 10 people will coexist at the same time.
The decree on weddings, baptisms and funerals continues to apply. From June 1, worship and other forms of religious worship will be allowed in churches, mosques and other religious sites, as health protocols such as the Ministry of Health will strictly adhere.
The same measures will apply to weddings, baptisms and funerals. At this point, I would like to express my warm thanks to the Primate of the Church of Cyprus for the excellent cooperation and responsibility he demonstrates in managing such a sensitive issue.
(iii) Public exercise (walking, swimming in the sea, cycling, etc.) is permitted, in open spaces, on sidewalks and sidewalks within parks, if the limits of persons do not exceed to two. Minors are excluded from this restriction. Parks, playgrounds and other open spaces remain closed.
From May 4, the use of open or outdoor sports facilities for high-performance athletes is included in the list of the Cyprus Olympic Committee. From the 18th of May, the training of team sports is allowed only in open spaces, based on the protocols that will be issued by the Ministry of Health.
It is noted that for both categories of individual and team sports the use of locker rooms, gyms or other closed related infrastructure is not allowed.
Dear friends, As I have repeatedly pointed out, everything depends on strict adherence to epidemiological protocols and instructions issued by the relevant Ministries.
Therefore, the decisions that include the measures in the present or the second phase will depend entirely on the epidemiological indicators and the recommendations of the scientific team. Under the condition of the above, the measures decided for the second phase include the following:
1. From 21 May, all restrictions on the movement of citizens will be lifted.
2. The presence in parks, playgrounds in open spaces, squares, marinas, etc. will be free, provided that the gathered people will not exceed 10.
3. Catering companies reopen only for outdoor areas, based on strict protocols to be issued by the Ministry of Labor and the Ministry of Health.
4. From May 21, hairdressers, barbershops, beauty salons are reopening.
5. From June 1
(i) It is allowed to operate and access the organized beaches.
(ii) The ports shall be fully operational, with the exception of the disembarkation of passengers by cruise ships.
(iii) Libraries, museums, archeological and historical sites will reopen.
(iv) Betting Shops are reopening. The operation of the above business or other activities will be strictly regulated by the terms and conditions set by the Ministries of Health and Labor.
At the same time, I would like to point out that the Government’s plan for the gradual repatriation of students and other Cypriot citizens, which due to the measures taken have been blocked abroad, is being implemented.