The government plans to maintain a state of emergency announced on Wednesday for the upcoming weeks or possibly months if necessary, Zoltan Kovacs, the state secretary for international communications and relations, said.
The extraordinary legal order introduced on Wednesday enables the government to issue resolutions with immediate effect if necessary, Kovacs told public news channel M1 on Thursday.
Hungary’s government information website koronavirus.gov.hu on Thursday confirmed another three cases of the new coronavirus, bringing the number of confirmed cases of Covid-19 in the country to 16. Two of the new virus cases are Hungarian citizens and the third an Iranian national, the website said. One of the Hungarians is a woman who had been in isolation at Budapest’s St. Janos Hospital for days and the other a man who had recently returned from Israel. The Iranian patient was a contact of the first Iranian student to test positive last week. Of the 16 people diagnosed with Covid-19 in Hungary so far, nine are Iranian citizens, six Hungarians and one is British. The number of people in quarantine has decreased from 69 to 65 while the health authority has done tests on 730 samples, the website said.
Later today the head of the infectology department of St. Laszlo Hospital reported that a series of new tests of an Iranian patient isolated with a confirmed coronavirus infection in Budapest have come back negative.
The police will check on entrants at crossing points on the country’s borders with Austria and Slovenia on a temporary basis. The Slovak government has decided to reintroduce controls along its borders with the exception of the Slovak-Polish border, starting on Friday morning.
Budapest’s cinemas, theatres, museums and libraries are being closed down for the time being, Gergely Karacsony, the city’s mayor, announced. Efforts are being made to reduce the risk of the virus’s spread on public transport, with ticket sales on vehicles stopped on Friday. Meanwhile, passengers can board buses using all doors.
Police will monitor residents’ compliance with home quarantine regulations and local mayors will be responsible for services to people in home isolation, the government website koronavirus.gov.hu said. In line with extraordinary government measures introduced to combat the epidemic, authorities will have the right to oblige potentially infected people to stay in home quarantine, the website said. Hungarian citizens returning from Italy, China, South Korea and Iran must undergo health examination upon entry into Hungary and must stay in home isolation even if they are free of symptoms, it added.
Source and photo: MTI