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I UNDERSTAND
English Section

Poles urged to stay at home for Christmas amid epidemic

24.11.2020 07:40
As their country battles an epidemic, Poles are being urged to stay at home this Christmas.
Image by StockSnap from Pixabay
Image by StockSnap from Pixabay Pixabay licence

The government plans to allow five people at most, excluding family members living together, to take part in traditional meals on December 24.

Government spokesman Piotr Müller warned that one person with COVID-19 could infect the rest of his or her family.

He added that Poland would soon have COVID-19 vaccines available. "Until then, we can avoid the deaths of thousands of people," Müller said.

Christmas Eve is a day when Polish families, sometimes travelling long distances to be together, traditionally sit down for the most carefully planned meal of the year, known as Wigilia.

The meal is followed by an exchange of gifts and, in many homes, the singing of carols.

Deputy Health Minister Waldemar Kraska indicated on Monday that the government may bring in rules restricting Poles from visiting their extended families at Christmas.

He acknowledged that such a break with tradition could cause “heartache”.

Kraska said Poland could realistically launch an anti-coronavirus vaccination programme in the second half of January.

Poland on Monday reported 15,002 new coronavirus infections and 156 more deaths, bringing its total number of cases to 876,333 and fatalities to 13,774.

(pk)

Source: IAR/TVP Info