Hungary’s current, strict coronavirus-related restrictions will be kept in place until January 11, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said on Monday, after a meeting of the central board coordinating efforts against the epidemic.
Orbán said on Facebook that a decision concerning restrictions on Christmas Eve would be made later.
The current curfew between 8pm and 5am will stay in place, Orbán said, adding that “we will decide about a possible exception for Christmas Eve on December 21, in view of the situation then.” He added, however, that
December 31 would be no exception, with a ban on New Year’s Eve parties.
Orbán said that a vaccine would be made available in the “foreseeable future”, adding that people wishing to be inoculated could start registering on Tuesday.
“We are working for Hungary to be among the first countries to get the vaccine,” he said.
The government is in talks with every player, without regard to political or corporate interests, he said. The only priority is to bring the vaccine to Hungarians as soon and as safely as possible, he said.
Regarding the testing of frontline workers which started two weeks ago, Orban said Hungary had been among the countries carrying out the higest number of tests last week.
He again thanked doctors, nurses and teachers for their work and called on all citizens to adhere to epidemiological regulations.
As we wrote today, fully 116 Covid patients, mostly elderly and suffering from an underlying illness, died over the past 24 hours in Hungary, while 3,870 infections were registered, bringing the total over the course of the pandemic to 254,148, read more details HERE.
Between 9am and 11am on weekdays and 8am and 10am on weekends, customers below that age are banned from shopping in grocery shops, household chemists and pharmacies. Senior citizens have the right to shop at any time.
On November 10, lawmakers extended the government’s special powers by 90 days, allowing the government to suspend the application of some legislation, diverge from legal provisions and take other extraordinary measures by decree.
A decree made commercial P+Rs, parking garages and parking lots in residential areas free of charge from 7:00 in the evening until 7:00 in the morning.
Soldiers are helping the police in carrying out their duties in public areas. Soldiers have also been assigned to help out staff in 93 hospitals around Hungary. The curfew is in force between 8pm and 5am, and work carried out beyond the home must be justified. With the exception of pharmacies and petrol stations, shops can be open until 7pm.
Hairdressers, masseurs and personal trainers must observe general curfew rules. Family and private events including birthday celebrations can be held with a maximum of ten people attending.
A major new rule is that face masks must be worn in public spaces in localities with more than 10,000 residents, though it is up to local mayors to decide which spaces the rule applies to.
Restaurants are limited to offering takeaways, while hotels are not allowed to cater to tourists, only guests arriving for business, economic or educational purposes. Sports events must be held behind closed doors.
Also, leisure facilities such as fitness gyms, indoor swimming pools, museums, libraries, cinemas, zoos and skating rinks must suspend their services. Events, including cultural events and Christmas fairs, cannot be held under the special rules.
The government has extended the temporary border control introduced on the full length of Hungary’s internal Schengen border until midnight on Jan. 31, more details HERE.