The government in Athens is signalling a gradual easing of the lockdown, despite continuing pressure on the health system from Covid-19 cases. While most reports are pointing to a further week of restrictions beyond the current end date of 16 March, planning is already underway to determine the sequence of steps to reopening.
Not for the first time since coming to power in the summer of 2019, the New Democracy government is being forced to defend itself against accusations that it is allowing the police a wide berth to use violence against citizens.
The spread of Covid-19 in Greece, and the problems this is causing for the health system, shows no sign of abating, triggering growing concern about the financial cost of the crisis and the government’s ability to keep providing businesses with economic relief.
The latest Covid-19 figures shocked the Greek government into announcing a series of changes to lockdown rules and moving yet more regions to the highest risk category, however opposition parties are unimpressed with the latest response to the pandemic, calling for the government to take stronger action.
The government is set to admit defeat in its strategy for containing Covid-19 as health data continues to cause concern and new measures are set to be announced to rein in the virus.
As Greece’s Covid-19 statistics show no signs of improvement, the government in Athens is reaching a decision point on both the nature and the duration of its lockdown measures.
The difficulties faced by the government are piling up as Covid-19 continues to be a threat to public health and finances, the stand-off over the hunger strike of terrorist Dimitris Koufodinas intensifies and another high-profile figure departs the administration.
The government is expected to announce the extension of the stricter lockdown in place in Attica and other parts of Greece for at least one more week due to the persistently high number of Covid-19 cases and the pressure on the national health system.
As the government becomes more deeply mired in accusations of covering up sex abuse in public institutions, PM Kyriakos Mitsotakis invited political leaders to debate the “quality of public dialogue” in a special session of Parliament on Thursday.
The government’s plans to reopen the retail sector in the coming days hang in the balance after a stark increase in the number of Covid-19 cases, leading to reported disagreements between scientists and the Development Ministry over the best course of action.