Switzerland plans new restrictions as Covid-19 cases rise

Switzerland is planning new restrictions as coronavirus situation across the country is worsening, news wires reported. Instead of calming down the pandemic was taking an exponential turn for the worse, having stabilised at a high level despite restrictions to counter it.

In a response the government said it wanted to bring in new nationwide measure, including am early closing time for shops and restaurants, with total closure an option down the line if the situation does not improve rapidly. The government is to meet on Friday to set standard Covid-19 control measures across the country, to apply from Saturday until 20 January, if the cantons agree.

"The epidemiological situation in Switzerland is noticeably deteriorating," the government said in a statement. "The number of infections is high and rising again, and the occupancy of intensive care beds remains very high. On average, 100 infected people infect more than 100 other people. This increases the number of cases again exponentially."

The proposed measures include restaurants, shops, markets and leisure facilities to close at 7pm and remain shut on Sundays. The government also proposes that five people from two households can gather for private events, with exceptions for celebrations for up to 10 people  at Christmas and New Year festivities. Public events will be banned, with the exception of religious celebrations and legislative meetings.

"If the situation worsens further in the next week, the Federal Council plans to adopt further measures at its meeting on December 18, such as the closure of restaurants and shops," it said. "We do not want to find ourselves once again in a situation where there is not other alternative than closing everything down," Health Minister Alain Berset told a press conference.

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