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Slovakia eases more coronavirus restrictions

Slovak Prime Minister Igor Matovic wearing a black-face-mask

Bratislava, Slovakia – Prime Minister Igor Matovic said that more anti-coronavirus restrictions in Slovakia will be lifted starting today.

Starting on Wednesday, wearing face-masks in the streets and in the open air won’t be mandatory anymore, and will be downgraded to a mere recommendation. Face-masks will however remain obligatory in closed public spaces, including in public transport or shops, while exceptions may apply in offices and workplaces.

The list of countries where Slovaks and other residents are allowed to travel freely has also been expanded¬†this morning, and now includes 16 “low-risk” countries, in addition to the Czech Republic, Hungary and Austria: Germany, Lichtenstein, Switzerland, Croatia, Slovenia, Bulgaria, Greece, Cyprus, Malta, Lithuania, Estonia, Latvia, Finland, Norway, Denmark and Iceland.

Anyone making plans to travel back and forth should however keep in mind that restrictions may still apply in some of these countries, and that Slovak international airports remain closed. Those wishing to travel to or transit through one of these countries should therefore check the conditions for entry.

Also note that this list may be updated in the coming days and weeks, depending on how the epidemiological situation unfolds.

The Slovak government has also relaxed travel restrictions and conditions for entry on the Slovak territory. From this morning, forced two-week quarantine – both in state-run facilities or at home, for those who use the “smart quarantine” app – is lifted for Slovaks and foreign residents returning to the country.

Health authorities nevertheless urged Slovaks returning from abroad to get in touch with their regional health office and voluntarily isolate themselves at home until they get tested for Covid-19.

Prime Minister Matovic, who has faced growing pressure in recent weeks to drop the coronavirus state of emergency introduced early March in Slovakia, confirmed that it will automatically expire on Sunday, June 14.

Events of up to 500 people are also allowed starting today.

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