State of emergency: Finland shuts down society for three weeks

Sanna MarinPhoto: Heikki Saukkomaa Lehtikuva via AP

The coronavirus infection is spreading fast in Finland, so the country will be shut down for three weeks from March 8, Prime Minister Sanna Marin announced.

That means, among other things, home school for all students who are 13 years or older. Leisure activities for older children will also stop, and gatherings of more than six people will not be allowed. 

In addition, restaurants must close, but exceptions can be made for areas with a low spread of infection.

Existing rules on home office and the use of face masks continue to apply.

“I know you’re tired”

“I know you’re tired. I am also tired. But we have to persevere, and now the situation is more difficult. The British virus variant is more difficult, and the old tools are not enough. Closed borders are not enough,” Marin said at a press conference on Thursday.

The leaders of the governing parties also attended the press conference. Interior Minister Maria Ohisalo described the upcoming shutdown as “a last resort.”

“Unfortunately, this affects those who are already in a difficult situation, but the government intends to support the industries that need it,” she said, according to broadcaster YLE.

Ohisalo believes it will soon be possible to make plans for future events.

“To use football terminology: I have full faith that Finland will play to win in the second half as well. We are champions, and we will win if we wash our hands, keep our distance, and test ourselves,” she said.

State of emergency

The Prime Minister plans to introduce a state of emergency. 

The government must submit a proposal to the National Assembly in order to close the country’s restaurants.

More than 50,000 cases of infection and 716 deaths have been registered in Finland during the pandemic.

Source: © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayNews

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