PM Marin: possibility of tightening Helsinki restrictions

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Prime Minister Sanna Marin stressed that drastic measures should be taken before the coronavirus situation worsens.

Image: Antti Aimo-Koivisto / Lehtikuva

Prime Minister of Finland Sanna Marin (SDP) said the latest coronavirus restrictions in the capital region announced on Friday could be tightened even more.

“Maybe there would be room to tighten up [them] further. But you have to be confident that the regional authorities have assessed the situation and made their decisions on this basis, ”Marin said in an interview with Yle.

Updated measures announced by the region’s coronavirus coordinating group include a 20-person limit for public events for three weeks, the recommendation of high school masks, and the suspension of indoor and recreational team activities contact for adults.

Marin said the government has issued recommendations in the past on what to do at different stages of the outbreak. She said she hoped that all recommended measures would be implemented in the Uusimaa region.

“The government has recommended for the broadcast phase, among other things, that adult recreation can be completely shut down if necessary. Events can be completely suspended, otherwise strong enough measures will be put in place. For example, public buildings could be completely closed, ”Marin said.

The Prime Minister has repeatedly stressed that the coronavirus pandemic must be taken seriously and drastic measures must be taken even before the disease situation worsens.

Minister Kiuru: Additional restrictions on restoration operations

Minister of Family Affairs and Social Services Krista kiuru (SDP) told Yle that the government is now dealing with the restoration operations in Uusimaa.

“On the government side, we are going to support the tightening of restrictions in the spreading phase in our own way, and in this regard, restaurant regulations are changing rapidly,” Kiuru said.

The minister said they had already started work on introducing phase spreading measures early next week.

“In the case of restaurants and eateries, moving from the acceleration phase to the spreading phase means there will be a return to very strict regulation of opening hours,” Kiuri said.

Isolation of Uusimaa not yet considered

Prime Minister Marin said there were no plans to lock down the Uusimaa region as was the case in the spring.

“[To do that] Finland must find itself in exceptional circumstances and we must put the emergency energy law into effect. We don’t currently have a situation where we could discuss such issues, ”Marin said.

The Prime Minister added, however, that the coronavirus situation could deteriorate rapidly. She wished the people of Uusimaa and Finland endurance and strength in this difficult situation.

“As long as there is no common protection from the vaccine, we must persevere and endure together, and yes, I believe the Finnish people can endure and survive,” Marin said.

Social Services Minister Kiuru has said she does not want to assess how close Finland is to a state of emergency if the direction of coronavirus developments cannot be reversed.

“In this situation, I don’t want to stress the possibilities that lie ahead if these regional actions fail. The pressure is now on for Uusimaa to succeed,” Kiuru said.

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