Thursday, June 20 2024

PM calls for small Christmas gatherings to minimise infection risk

Family gatherings this Christmas should be limited to minimise the risk of contagion, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said on Saturday during a visit to Thessaloniki.

“We will have a different Christmas this year. Much more limited, with our families, with the people we love, maybe one more family. And so it must be in this special 2020, which had many surprises in store for us,” he told medical and nursing staff at the Papageorgiou Hospital.

Mitsotakis said the data show that the viral load in the city is decreasing which is reflected in the lowering on hospital admissions, however it will take more time to see a clear improvement.


"We know that we will have another one or two very difficult weeks ahead of us, but we also know that when we start to exit the strict restrictions, we will have to be doubly careful,” he said, and reiterated that people should not repeat the mistakes of the summer when health directives were largely abandoned.

“Responsibility weighs on all of us, I believe, and I was the first to recognize the share of responsibility that belongs to the state, but we must not forget that individual behaviors are what determine the rate of spread of the pandemic,” he added. 

Speaking to a local radio station before leaving town, Mitsotakis reiterated that he accepted blame for not imposing a lockdown in Thessaloniki a week earlier, but added that “there were not many voices” in the city asking for a closure, “nor did I have any relevant suggestion” from the expert committee advising the government.