COVID-19 Response Team Head Says Cannot Rule Out Greater Presence of Omicron

By 30 December 2021
COVID-19 Response Team Head Says Cannot Rule Out Greater Presence of Omicron
Photo: Pixabay

ZAGREB, 30 Dec 2021 - Deputy Prime Minister Davor Božinović, who heads the national COVID-19 response team, said on Thursday that considering a rising number of new infections in the last two days, one could not rule out that there were more cases of the Omicron variant than the 24 cases confirmed by sequencing so far.

Speaking to reporters after a government session, Božinović said that some link the sudden rise in new infections to the Christmas holidays while some rule that connection out.

"We cannot prove it. If the rising numbers are not related to Christmas, they are related to Omicron," he said.

Speaking of New Year Eve's celebrations, the minister said that in force was a decision on longer working hours for hospitality establishments, allowing them to work until 2 am in the night between 31 December and 1 January.

Inspectors will be visiting cafes but considering their insufficient number, not all such establishments will be covered, Božinović said, noting that he believed people would not go to places where they believe their health would be at risk.

Sinj mayor's invitation irresponsible, risky

Considering that the coastal region of Dalmatia has the highest number of infections in the country, Božinović said that local public health institutes were monitoring the situation and would decide on a possible tightening of restrictions.

As for the invitation by Sinj Mayor Miro Bulj of the Bridge party to all to attend "a free" New Year's party in Sinj in the Dalmatian hinterland, Božinović said the invitation was irresponsible and risky.

"We cannot support such calls, in Istria, all public gatherings have been canceled, and some counties have organized New Year's Eve parties but with strict checks. That is a responsible approach," he said.

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