Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis on Thursday said his government wants to avoid a nationwide "lockdown" amid a resurgent coronavirus pandemic in the country, as single-day confirmed instances now exceed 1,000 when they were in the low single-digit range last spring.
Another three regions in the country, the greater Thessaloniki area, central Larissa prefecture and more rural Rhodopi prefecture in the northeast were added to the "red zone", meaning increased cases of Covid-19 infections. The highest emergency level means that all but retail activity and schools will be curtailed, while masks are mandatory in public places, whether inside or outdoors.
A day earlier, Wednesday, confirmed instances reached 1,547, the highest single-day number ever recorded in Greece since the outbreak. Another 10 related fatalities were also reported, bringing the Covid-related death toll in the country to 608.
At the same time, the number of people being treated for acute coronavirus cases in hospital ICUs remained just above 100, at 108.
Although still low, compared to other European country, the total number of cases in Greece reached 34,299.