Lithuania under lockdown (though virus rates lowest in EU) | True Lithuania
True Lithuania

Lithuania under lockdown (though virus rates lowest in EU)

2020 03 15. The government of Lithuania has decided to put Lithuania under lockdown due to the spread of coronavirus in the other countries of the European Union. The lockdown gradually, decision-by-decision, was introduced over a period of several days.

The schools and universities were closed and the main public events banned several days ago. This is to be followed by a ban on all public events and non-essential shops operations and restaurant/bar operations, leaving only food stores, pharmacies and veterinary pharmacies in operation.

Furthermore, the borders of Lithuania are to be gradually closed and airports closed down as well. Only cargo and similar "essential services" would be allowed to pass the borders, as well as returning citizens and permanent residents of Lithuania. Other nearby countries also enacted similar measures (primarily Poland) but, until the 19th of March, the return of Lithuanians through Poland should still be permitted.

The strict measures were adopted despite the fact that Lithuania, so far, has just 9 recorded cases of coronavirus, all of them imported, with no documented community transmission. This is the smallest number of cases among all the European Union countries. Still, a few people out of those 9 have not immediately self-isolated after returning from abroad, making it possible that the community transmission already took place. Furthermore, the existence of the Schengen treaty and open borders within the EU mean that an unknown number of people have arrived to Lithuania in recent weeks from Western Europe that is hit by a virus: it is thus impossible to check them all and find out if any one of them has symptoms.

Therefore, knowing that the situation in Italy, Spain, and other EU countries have shown, such transmission may easily make the number of cases grow exponentially, the government of Lithuania decided to take some of the harshest measures so far among the countries with similar infection level.

Informational sign several days before the lockdown

Informational sign several days before th elockdown advising those who returned from the infected countries call the emergency number in case they feel any bad symptoms instead of walking in a hospital

Article written by Augustinas Žemaitis

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