Lebanon relaxes lockdown measures as infections dwindle

Citizens are banned from being out on the streets between midnight till 5 a.m. everyday: ministry


BEIRUT: The Interior Ministry announced new general mobilization rules Sunday, with more establishments allowed to open and the curfew hours reduced significantly as Lebanon records relatively less coronavirus cases.

According to the Interior Ministry memo, citizens are banned from being out on the streets between midnight till 5 a.m. everyday which is a notable change in curfew hours, previously set at 7 p.m.

Public institutions are to open during their work hours. Shops, companies and establishments are to adjust their opening hours in accordance to the new curfew for citizens.

Factories, grocery and meat stores, hotels and fuel stations can open 24 hours a day.

Banks, money transfer offices, currency exchangers and pharmacies are to follow the instructions of their respective associations for opening hours.

Restaurants, cafes, shopping malls, museums and Casino du Liban can now open from 5 a.m. to midnight.

However, gyms, public parks, nightclubs, amusement parks and nurseries will still remain closed in the coming stage, in accordance with the Interior Ministry decision.

The ministry recommended citizens to not wear masks while playing sports and exercising.

Swimming pools and beaches are to open while following special guidelines.

All establishments are required to follow health guidelines against the spread of coronavirus and avoid overcrowding.

Car plate rules are still intact: Cars with plates ending in even numbers are still only allowed to be driven on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays and cars with plates ending with odd numbered plates on the alternate days. All cars are allowed to be driven on Sundays.

Citizens are also still required to wear masks in public and in cars when there are people other than the driver.

Individuals and establishments who violate the ministry’s rules are subject to fines.

Lebanon currently has 1,191 registered coronavirus cases, with the daily number of infections low, compared to a spike in cases last week.

The government announced a state of general mobilization in mid-March, and has been loosening restrictions since the beginning of May through a five-stage plan.

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