Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis appealed to the public on Thursday to wear masks and comply with health safety regulations so that stricter coronavirus containment measures can be averted, saying that it is a choice between “self-protection and lockdown.”
“The mask is our vaccination until we have a vaccination,” Mitsotakis said in a televised appeal to the public, warning that failure to comply and brings down the number of new infections and hospitalizations will lead to lockdown measures.
“Managing the pandemic is not a pendulum that swings from total lockdown to total complacency,” he said.
Mitsotakis pre-announced the creation of a new ICU with a capacity of 50 beds at Sotiria Hospital and made special reference to the donation of the Niarhos Foundation for the addition of 174 new beds. He further announced that 400 buses (100 in 15 days and the rest by the end of the year) will be added to existing routes, especially to remote areas, such as Rafina, Gerakas and Pendeli.
The new flu vaccine will be available for prescriptions by doctors as of next Monday, September 28. All citizens over 60 years of age and those that belong to vulnerable groups are advised to be vaccinated.
342 cases of Covid-19 were reported in the past 24 hours, 213 of them in Attica. 9 people died from the virus.
Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis spoke on Thursday afternoon with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.
According to government sources, they discussed the de-escalation of tension in the Eastern Mediterranean region after the withdrawal of the Turkish research ship “Oruc Reis”
One of the three suspects detained after a raid in Koukaki, where a cache of explosives was found, was charged with violating the law on arms to a criminal degree.
The man, 42, is the renter of the storage space that counter-terrorism police raided starting Wednesday along with four houses.
The three, including another man and a woman, were led before the prosecutor shortly after 21:00 on Thursday under heavy security, and were accompanied by a counter-terrorist unit. They all received an extension to prepare their defense.
The warehouse on Anastassiou Zini Street revealed a quantity of explosives sufficient for the construction of bombs, police sources said.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is due to visit Athens, the northern port city of Thessaloniki and the island of Crete next week in the context of a trip starting on Sunday that will also include stops in Italy and Croatia.
“Secretary Pompeo will meet with Prime Minister Mitsotakis and Foreign Minister Dendias to renew our shared commitment to advance security, peace, and prosperity in the Eastern Mediterranean and celebrate the strongest US-Greek relationship in decades,” the US State Department said, announcing the visit on Thursday.
Pompeo will also be traveling to the northern port city of Thessaloniki, to “sign a bilateral science and technology agreement, as well as host energy sector business leaders for a discussion to highlight energy diversification and infrastructure projects in Greece.”
He will then head down to Crete, where he will visit the Souda Bay naval base, “to underscore the strong US security partnership with NATO ally Greece,” the announcement added.
Pompeo’s visit to Athens comes amid efforts to de-escalate tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean between Greece, Cyprus and Turkey over maritime boundaries and energy exploration rights.
And the weather forecast…
Sunny in Attica today. The temperature will reach a maximum of 30 degrees Celsius.