The Cabinet in the Republic of Cyprus is moving forward with more relaxations, following further improvement of the epidemiological situation, but many places still remain off limits to those without a SafePass.
Health Minister Constantinos Ioannou said on Friday that vaccinations against COVID were up and hospitalizations down, prompting the government to ease post-lockdown restrictions even further starting Monday, May 17.
According to Ioannou, night curfew will run from 12 midnight through 5am everyday, essentially adding an extra hour of activity in the evening before returning home.
Starting on Monday, a SafePass, also known as CoronaPass, will remain in effect but it won’t be required for outdoor dining.
Starting on Monday, SafePass, also known as a CoronaPass, will remain in effect but it won’t be required for outdoor dining
A Safe Pass is the government’s latest way to ascertain proof of immunity for individuals who wish to visit places where people congregate, such as cafes and restaurants, big retail shops and DIY shop centers, gyms, hotels, as well as churches, movie theaters, and shopping malls.
The new measure means people sitting down at open patios outside cafes and restaurants, attending open theaters or engaging in activities out in nature, won’t be required to have a SafePass, which is also not required when going to the supermarket, or visiting business establishments under special categories such as banks, betting shops, barbershops and hair salons, spas or beauty parlors, bakeries, small stores, mini markets, convenience stores, and pharmacies.
Night clubs and Greek tavernas will remain closed until next month when they are expected to start operating again on June 10 based on health protocols to be determined and announced after consultations with stakeholders in the hospitality industry.
Earlier reports said grievances within the hospitality industry had reached the Presidential Palace, putting enormous pressure on the health minister to water down rules pertaining to restaurants.
But following the president’s cabinet meeting in the late morning, Ioannou said he was optimistic particularly over the low positivity rate and a drop in number of COVID hospitalizations.
Ioannou attributed the new relaxations to a recent two-week lockdown, saying it the partial shutdown helped improve the epidemiological situation while also giving time for more people to get vaccinated.
The minister said the Cabinet also took into consideration “all the latest data but mainly a need to lift the spirits of the Cypriot people after many months of sacrifice.”