The Netherlands will bar flights from Britain, South Africa and almost all countries in South America starting from Jan. 23 and can implement a nationwide curfew in an try and cease the unfold of the coronavirus variant first present in Britain, Prime Minister Mark Rutte stated on Wednesday.

“These are darkish weeks — we’ve got to get previous this time,” Hugo de Jonge, the minister of well being, stated throughout a information convention.

The curfew, which might be the primary imposed throughout the Netherlands since World Struggle II, requires approval from Parliament in a vote scheduled for Thursday. It will final from 8:30 p.m. to 4:30 a.m. nightly till Feb. 10.

The nation is already beneath a lockdown that closed eating places, gyms and swimming pools, locations of leisure and most retailers, in addition to halting most in-person education.

Beneath the brand new guidelines, the variety of company that folks can entertain at residence will probably be decreased to 1 and vacationers to the Netherlands through airplane and boat must take a fast coronavirus take a look at within the hours earlier than they board, in addition to present a unfavorable outcome from a PCR take a look at taken throughout the previous 72 hours. These new measures come even if circumstances have been slowly declining.

The nation may also delay second doses of the Pfizer vaccinations to 6 weeks from three, after a choice to decrease the quantity saved in inventory, Mr. de Jonge introduced. “This fashion we will defend extra folks sooner, that is additionally vital due to the unfold of the British mutation,” he stated.

Well being consultants within the Netherlands say they worry that with out these new measures the extra transmissible variant will probably be dominant within the nation by March.

The Dutch Outbreak Administration Crew, the skilled group advising the federal government on its insurance policies to forestall the unfold of the virus, warned on Wednesday {that a} third wave of the virus was inevitable due to the unfold of mutations.

Since March, the Netherlands has struggled repeatedly in its efforts to curb the unfold of the coronavirus, laying naked what many say are systemic problems in how the nation is ruled.

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