Armenia to extend the state of emergency for another month

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YEREVAN, August 6. /ARKA. Armenia’s Deputy Prime Minister Tigran Avinyan, who is also head of a government task force set up to enforce the state of emergency declared to stop the spread of coronavirus, told a press briefing today that the government will extend the state of emergency for another month.

He said along with that significant changes will be made to ease some of the restrictions. In particular, the government will revise its decision to ban the entry of foreign citizens, as well as the restrictions limiting or banning exports of certain goods. He said the restriction on holding rallies and public events will be revised towards easing as well.

Nevertheless, as Avinyan noted, this entire package will depend on the epidemic situation, as well as on whether the positive dynamics in the fight against the disease will be maintained, and whether the anti-epidemic rules established by the task force will be observed.

“This will allow us to reconsider all the restrictions that exist currently,” Avinyan said. He added that most likely this will be the last extension of the state of emergency.

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan admitted today the model of decentralized fight against coronavirus appeared to be ineffective.

“The situation, fortunately, continues to improve, and on August 4, for the first time since June 4, the number of active cases was less than 8 thousand,” he said during the briefing.

At the same time, according to the prime minister, the problem is that this positive dynamic has brought with it bad news.
“With the naked eye, one can see that citizens began to perceive this decline as a reason for non-compliance with anti-epidemic rules thinking that the coronavirus has been defeated. It is not so!” Pashinyan stressed.

He noted that the epidemiological situation continues to remain difficult and, if there is no adequate response to this situation, if more efforts are not made to comply with the rules, the situation can quickly slide towards early July, when the peak incidence was recorded.

A 30-day state of emergency to curb the spread of coronavirus was declared in Armenia on March 16 and restrictions were imposed on free movement of citizens. The government banned also some types of economic activity. On April 13, the government extended the state of emergency for another month and on May 4 it lifted the ban on almost all types of economic activity and the free movement of citizens, except for public transport.

On May 14, the government has again extended the state of emergency for another 30 days. However, despite the extension, public transport, preschools, trading centers, restaurants and gyms have reopened starting from May 18, and wearing of masks has become mandatory in public spaces.

On June 12, the government has extended the state of emergency for another month- until July 13 and then again until August 13.

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