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Croatian PM says new lockdown only as last resort

Croatia coronavirus lockdown

PM Andrej Plenkovic (Photo credit:  HINA/ Daniel KASAP/dk)

ZAGREB, Oct 21 (Hina) – Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic said on Wednesday that a new lockdown could only be expected as a last resort if the situation escalated so much so that there was no other option.

Croatia today registered 1,424 new cases of the coronavirus infection. Asked whether more restrictive measures, such as a curfew, are being considered, he said that there were two methods.

One method is to view the problem rationally, take measures and raise public awareness of the seriousness of a problem, which is what we are doing, Plenkovic said.

Restrictive measures inevitably lead to negative economic effects, but at the same time state and public institutions receive their salaries, pensioners receive their pensions, and the private sector will get €1 billion. We are taking care of the general interest, he said.

A curfew, restrictive measures, a new lockdown, they are the last resort if the situation escalates so much so that there is no other option, Plenkovic said.

I believe in the strength, vigilance, and responsibility of the Croatian people, he added.

He reiterated that the problem of the pandemic should not be underestimated.

If this were nothing, there would not be 40 million infections in the world, there would not be restrictive measures in Slovenia. We have to get serious, the question is whether we will approach the problem seriously or in a way that will lead to confusion, Plenkovic said.

Bozinovic: We will concetrate on punishing violations of measures

 The head of the national Covid response team, Davor Bozinovic, said on Wednesday that as long as the number of people infected with coronavirus continued to grow they would concentrate on punishing any failure to adhere to epidemiological measures, in particular legal entities.

Bozinovic visited the National Civil Protection Authority’s warehouse in Jastrebarsko and told reporters that new measures would not be needed to curb the spread of coronavirus if measures already adopted were adhered to.

“We are monitoring the situation. The numbers are growing. They are growing outside Croatia too,” said Bozinovic and underlined that they will concentrate the most on the measures in place, in particular the obligations of legal entities that organise events or other commercial acclivities where people fluctuate.

In that regard, he said, “we will punish any behaviour that is not in accordance with the epidemiological measures.”

He claimed that they had invested a lot of effort, including the Croatian Institute for Public Health which adopted detailed recommendations for all commercial and social activities so that they would not have to shut down.

“That effort has been transformed into specific recommendations by the response team,” said Bozinovic, calling on all citizens to adhere to all measures as the only way to slow down the spread of the virus in Croatia.

He underscored that as long as the epidemic lasts, citizens have to avoid any large gatherings, private parties and meetings.

He noted that the measures in place were intended for public events and not for events in people’s homes. He warned, however, that it is in those circumstances that citizens forget themselves the most which then results in the virus spreading when they go home or back to work.

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