Monday, 22 February 2021

Sveta Nedelja Helps Caterers and Gym Owners with 1,500 Kuna

February 22, 2021 – As one of the five best cities in Croatia regarding the living standard, Sveta Nedelja helps caterers and gym owners with one-time assistance of 1,500 kuna.

Although gyms and sports centers opened their doors on February 15 after two and a half months due to epidemiological measures, both gym owners and caterers struggle to cope with the revenue loss. And while the Government aid of 4,000 kuna for all catering and sports workers is still coming, many find this amount insufficient to live normally. It is still not known when and whether the catering facilities in Croatia will be opened.

However, some encouraging news comes for Sveta Nedelja's owners of catering facilities and gyms. Namely, the mayor of Sveta Nedelja, Dario Zurovec, announced on his Facebook profile that all owners of catering facilities and gyms in the city area would receive one-time assistance of 1,500 kuna.

"One-time assistance of the Sveta Nedelja City to cafes, restaurants, gyms, and fitness centers in the amount of 1,500 kuna will at least somewhat alleviate the difficult situation in which our fellow citizens find themselves, whose right to work is limited due to epidemiological measures. Vision, ambition, development, and responsible management have resulted in our city setting standards for the whole of Croatia in recent years. I want us to continue to be that – an example for others city," wrote Mayor Dario Zurović on his Facebook page.

Lately, only positive connotations have been associated with the city of Sveta Nedelja. With their investment in the city development, Sveta Nedelja has been named the best medium-sized town in Croatia for the economy for the last few years. Also, they have been at the very top of the best cities in Croatia for quality of life for several years. Now Sveta Nedelja helps caterers and gym owners with the desire to be a positive example to other Croatian cities as well.

Details of the public call for funds allocated from the city budget have been published on the official website of Sveta Nedelja. All Sveta Nedelja's residents whose work has been suspended by decisions of the Headquarters must fill the form and attach the necessary documentation to receive funds. The application for assistance is open until March 31, 2021.

For the latest news from Dario Zurovec and Sveta Nedelja, follow the dedicated TCN section.

Thursday, 11 February 2021

Four New Measures: Coffee to Go Allowed, Gyms, Foreign Language Schools, Casinos Open

February 11, 2021 – At today's Government session, Prime Minister Andrej Plenković presented four new measures valid from Monday, February 15, 2021. The four new measures include allowing cafes to serve coffee to go and the opening up of gyms, foreign language schools and casinos.

Asked about whether the epidemiological measures would be relaxed after February 15, Prime Minister Andrej Plenković said yesterday that "fellow citizens who have shown a great deal of responsibility and patience should be rewarded." At today's Government session, Plenković announced the changes, warning that there is still no room for excessive relaxation nor the cessation of the responsible behaviour of all citizens.

"We monitored the development of the epidemiological situation in Croatia, and after talks with the Civil Protection Headquarters, epidemiologists, and members of the Government, we made several decisions," said Plenković.

The four new measures include:

  • enabling caterers to sell coffee to go and thus allow them to do business; February's fees are valid for the entire month
  • allowing the opening of gyms and fitness centres while respecting epidemiological measures, which is good for physical activity and people's health
  • enabling children to study in foreign language schools so that in addition to their regular school activities, they can also attend extracurricular activities
  • allowing the opening of bookmakers, slot machine clubs, and casinos, with restrictions on the consumption of beverages

Plenković added that the next analysis of the measures' effect would be on March 1, 2021. They will decide whether there will be new relaxations or a new tightening up of those epidemiological measures, depending on the epidemiological situation.

Plenković also reported on the situation with the spread of the novel coronavirus in Croatia and the declining trend of new infections. Today, Croatia is third country in the European Union in terms of the weekly average number of confirmed cases per million inhabitants. We have the fifth largest two-week drop in the number of deaths.

"At the same time, we're still in the winter months, and a strong wave of cold weather has been announced. The British variant of the virus has also been identified in Croatia. Many European countries are extending or tightening up their measures. After the initial delays in the delivery of vaccines, we have indications that Pfizer and AstraZeneca's delivery dynamics will accelerate, and we can expect larger quantities by the end of March. So far, we've received about 150,000 doses, and we expect more than 600,000 doses by the end of March, which means that we will be able to vaccinate a much larger number of our fellow citizens," said Plenković.

He pointed out that all three vaccines – Pfizer, Moderna, and AstraZeneca – are all one hundred percent effective in preventing death from the virus. They are also effective against the need for respirators and the development of more severe symptoms.

"There are no obstacles which would suggest that people over 65 should not receive the AstraZeneca vaccine,'' said Plenković, adding that they want to vaccinate as many people as possible who are at risk.

Health Minister Vili Beroš reported that the vaccine's 669 side effects had been reported, and they were most commonly just mild reactions.

"The number of new cases is continuing to fall from week to week. We're monitoring the spread of new variants of this virus. Continuing the vaccination process is our tool for success. Today, we mark the World Day of the Sick. Special emphasis is placed on emotional struggles, and as such I'd like to thank our healthcare professionals," Beroš said.

To read more news about coronavirus in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Tuesday, 2 February 2021

Gym Owner Released from Custody, Called on Prime Minister to Resign

February 2, 2021 – The gym owner who opened his doors yesterday in Zagreb's Trešnjevka, despite the Civil Protection Headquarters' ban, has been released from custody.

Andrija Klarić, the 51-year-old gym owner, who was handed over to the custody supervisor yesterday on suspicion of having committed the criminal offense of spreading and transmitting a contagious disease, was released from custody today.

'What I did was right'

Recall, Andrija Klarić opened his gym in Trešnjevka in Zagreb yesterday morning, thus violating the current ban on the work of gyms and sports centers set by the Civil Protection Headquarters. Article 180 of the Criminal Code stipulates that a person could be punished by up to two years in prison for such an act.

However, as Index reports, the prosecution did not ask for pre-trial detention, so he was released. Klarić stated that the prosecution had no evidence against him, that he was not a spreader of the infection, and that double standards applied in Croatia because some could work while others are forbidden the constitutional right to work.

He even called on Prime Minister Andrej Plenković to resign and call elections because he believes that the government is not coping well with the coronavirus crisis. Also, he invited citizens to gather tomorrow for a protest on Ban Jelačić Square at 10 am and "oppose the deprivation of civil liberties."

"I knew that what I was doing was right. I know we're not spreaders of the virus. They don't have any evidence. Of the total number infected by November 1, 181 are from 'gyms,' which is less than 0.5 percent. They can't declare gyms dangerous places," said Klarić.

Spas and shopping malls still operating

He compared the example of gyms with spas and shopping malls that are opened.

Klarić claims that everyone in the gym adhered to epidemiological measures and that everyone who came to exercise had already gotten over the coronavirus. The police officers, the state inspectorate, and the state attorney, he says, were fair and kind. They were even "embarrassed that they had to do it."

"The police officers were phenomenal. At the end of the investigation, the gentleman said – a hero, not a criminal," Klarič said after his release from custody. He says that he would repeat the same thing in the same circumstances and does not think he did anything wrong.

"He who is ready to give freedom for security. did not deserve either. When injustice becomes the law, then resistance becomes an obligation," Klarić stressed, adding that everything possible should be done to prevent those who do wrong.

'Small step for Andrija, significant for Croatia'

His lawyer Gordan Marović also gave a statement to the media.

"He will be released. The State Attorney's Office of the Republic of Croatia (DORH) did not request pre-trial detention for him," Marović said.

"He understands this as a fight not only for his justice but also a fight for everyone. He believes that there were a lot of people not fighting for their own rights," Marović said about Klarić, adding that he feels injustice.

"The right to work is a matter of personal freedoms and human rights. The constitution guarantees the right before the law, and we see that not everyone is equal before the law because some can work, others cannot," he added.

When asked why Klarić did it, given the penalties and given that he did it himself, Marović paraphrased Neil Armstrong: "This is a small step for Andrija, but a big one for Croatia. Someone has finally put his personal interests ahead of society's interests."

To read more news from Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Monday, 1 February 2021

Owner Opened His Gym Today Despite Headquarters' Ban, Police Arrested Him

February 1, 2021 – Despite the ban on the work of gyms issued by the Civil Protection Headquarters, valid until February 15, 2021, one owner opened his gym today in Trešnjevka, allowing people to exercise. The police arrested him shortly after the opening.

As of today, Croatia is slightly easing epidemiological measures in two segments. Elementary school students are returning to classes, and outdoor training is allowed. The terraces of cafes and restaurants remain closed, as do gyms and sports centers. But some gym owners were overwhelmed and decided to open their doors.

One of them is Andrej Klarić, the owner of the Quantum Premium Gym. He opened his gym's doors in Zagreb's Trešnjevka, despite the Civil Protection Headquarters' measures imposing a work ban. Several people came to exercise, aware of the consequences, Index reports.

'It's unbearable to live off the minimum salary for so long'

Last night via Facebook, the gym owner publicly invited the exercisers to come, and since then, the police have been on duty at their doorstep. A few minutes after the people started exercising this morning, the police and the inspection entered and closed the doors, leaving many journalists who gathered outside.

While people were exercising in the gym, the police arrested the owner. Klarić is one of the few who dared to make such a move but claims that he has nothing more to lose. He says he was tricked, no longer trusting anyone, and that the lockdown was unnecessary without any effect.

"The reasons why I did this are very simple. From the first day when the facilities were closed, I was against their closure because I believe that the already existing measures were more than appropriate," Klarić told 24sata before his arrest.

He added that it is unbearable to be patient and live on the minimum salary for so many months.

His daughter Duga Klarić made a brief statement, expressing surprise that more police vehicles than trainers had gathered. She pointed out that the gym remains open today because they were told so.

"They told us that we received a fine, but that we could stay open today, so we stay open today," the owner's daughter said, adding that she did not know how high fine they received.

However, the police identified all the people who were exercising at the gym this morning, and the gym is now closed. No one is inside, and there are still two police cars in front of it.

Messages of support

Klarić is already receiving messages of support from all sides. Dražen Oreščanin, the director of the Voice of Entrepreneurs, also came to the scene to support Klarić, who is about to stand trial.

"I came to support Mr. Andrija Klarić on behalf of the Voice of Entrepreneurs, ahead of the trial that awaits him regarding legal aid because it is something we provide to all our members through the program. The police are behind me. I asked them if I could come in, and they told me I couldn't. The gym is closed and locked. I also talked to the owner's daughter. She told me that he was taken into custody, so he was arrested, and he went to give a statement. We wouldn't want him to spend 30 days in custody because of the possibility of a repeat offense. We were there to show his support," Oreščanin said in a Facebook video.

He thanked everyone who supports Klarić and called on everyone to join the protest action on Ban Jelačić Square on Wednesday at 10 am.

Božinović: Police and inspectors acted following the law

At a press conference of the Civil Protection Headquarters, Interior Minister Davor Božinović briefly commented on police interventions due to the gyms' opening, saying he was aware of one case.

"I know that the police and the inspectors of the Civil Protection and the State Inspectorate, who go on patrols together, will enforce the law. I am sure that what they have acted so far was acted in accordance with the law. If everyone would decide for themselves when to open facilities during an epidemic, what measures would he determine, then there would be no need for specializations such as the specialization of prof. Capak or immunologists. This situation is not easy for anyone, but I think that people are showing rationality and resisting attempts to create an atmosphere where there is no epidemic or that it has passed. By all parameters, Croatia has the least strict measures in the EU, and if we keep this downward trend, we can talk about new corrections," Božinović said.

When asked about the sanctions that await the gym owner, Božinović did not want to speculate about it because it is the subject of an ongoing criminal investigation.

"We recently changed the laws in the Parliament because there are situations in which we must resort to sanctioning behavior that is risky for the spread of the infection. Let's leave it to the institutions,“ said Božinović.

To read more news from Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Friday, 29 January 2021

New Measures from Midnight: Restaurants, Cafes, and Gyms in Croatia Remain Closed

January. 29,  2021 - New measures in Croatia for schools and sports will enter into force as of midnight. Restaurants, cafes, and gyms in Croatia remain closed. 

The National Civil Protection Headquarters held a press conference to report on the current epidemiological situation in Croatia and coronavirus vaccination and anti-epidemic measures. At yesterday's session, the Government presented a minimal easing of measures.

In the last 24 hours, 561 new cases of COVID-19 were recorded, and the number of active cases in Croatia today is a total of 3117, the National Civil Protection Headquarters announced. Among them, 1286 patients are in hospital, of which 121 are on a ventilator. Twenty-nine people died, the Headquarters announced.

The average age of the deceased was 79 years, and the youngest deceased was 38 years old. Five-hundred-eighty-eight people recovered.

In the last 24 hours, 5,020 people were tested, and the percentage of positives was 11.18%, Vera Katalinić Janković reported at the press conference.

So far, a total of 58,585 people have been vaccinated.

According to the new measures in force from midnight, elementary schools will go back to in-person classes, and sports activities will be allowed outodoors, swimming pools, and sports bubbles. Restaurants, cafes, and gyms will remain closed, reports Slobodna Dalmacija

HZJZ director Krunoslav Capak reported on the 14-day incidence per 100,000 inhabitants.

"A week ago, there were 643 new cases out of 4863 tested, and two weeks ago 715 new cases out of 5335 tested. In the first 5 days of this week, there were 2619 new cases, and last week 3015. The number is 13% less than the previous week's figure, so we have a further mitigated downward trend. The incidence per county is 189.0 on average. Sisak-Moslavina has the highest incidence, and Istria has the lowest. Croatia ranks 7th in the EU rankings. Six countries have a lower incidence than us. The total mortality rate per million inhabitants is 1196.8, which puts us in 20th place in the ranking of EU countries. In the last week, the average share of positive tests was 11.2. We spent more than 79,000 vaccine doses. To date, we have received 409 side effects to the Pfizer vaccine and 11 suspected side effects to the Moderna vaccine. These are mainly local reactions, fever, pain at the site of application, and headache, and there have been more serious reactions to the Pfizer vaccine. Two required the use of adrenaline and 22 the use of other medications," Capak said.

Vili Beroš said that today, for the first time, the number of hospitalized is below 1,300 after a long time, but it is still a difficult clinical picture and that we have a large number of deaths.

"This indicates that the clinical picture is still relatively difficult. This allows us to think cautiously in giving in to measures, but not in relaxed behavior. The fact and new strains of the virus in our neighborhood and the current vaccination delay should be taken into account. We must be aware of that, and that emphasizes our responsible behavior, and there is no alternative to that," said Minister Vili Beroš.

Davor Božinović said that the decision on the necessary restrictive measures and recommendations would take effect tomorrow, i.e., tonight at midnight.

"We have decided that the decision will take effect tonight at midnight and will last until February 15."

Patient associations are demanding that high-risk groups be vaccinated with vaccines that are 95 percent effective.

"Not only high-risk but all other citizens as well. They should be allowed to be vaccinated with the best possible vaccine, but the question is what kind of vaccines are available to us. I support such an idea. People who are chronically ill and of old age are the first to be vaccinated, and it should be emphasized that they should be able to be vaccinated with the highest quality vaccines. Numerous discussions are taking place on the topic of which vaccine to procure. The one that is safe and effective. We cannot count on vaccines that are only now in the testing phase since there is no reliable evidence that they are effective. Some more manufacturers are developing new vaccines. Novavax is in the 2nd and 3rd phase of the clinical trial, in the 3rd phase of the study in Britain it showed an efficiency of 89 percent for the common and new strain of the virus," said Beroš.

Capak answered whether the Astra Zeneca vaccine will be registered today and when it will come to the Republic of Croatia.

"Vaccines for the EU are registered with the European Medicines Agency, which has strict procedures and legislation. This means that someone who does not meet these criteria cannot apply and register. That is the price of the safety of our vaccines. They guarantee safety. For other vaccines for which we do not have data and have not been marketed transparently, we cannot claim to be safe. We are waiting for the European Medicines Agency to say whether the vaccine is safe and effective.

Data saying that the Astra Zeneca cannot be used for people over 65 cannot be confirmed because we do not have enough data. At the end of the day, it was agreed that the Astra Zeneca vaccine would be registered today. It was announced that we should receive 156,158 doses of their vaccine by the end of February, in three tranches," Capak said.

Bozinovic referred to the announcements of protests by caterers and gym owners for not loosening measures.

"I still hope that will not happen because there is no reason for that. The measures are just an extension of measures that have been valid for two months, and in those two months, we have concluded that although we still have the most liberal measures in Europe, we also have a clear downward trend in the number of new infections. That number still needs to go down. We must take care of our lives and health. The epidemiological profession has set priorities in preparing this decision, and they do not refer only to this situation but are of a principled nature. When it comes to concessions, the basic rule is that it must be gradual, and given the circumstances surrounding the new variant of the virus and the delay of the vaccine, we must go cautiously. In this context, our Epidemiology Reference Center has set clear principles: if it goes with affordability, health comes first, including sports and education, then the economy, and then other activities. I see no reason for anything to change here. No one in the world has found a recipe for these activities. In EU member states, these facilities have been closed since October. We tried to keep them as open as possible. Representatives of caterers then clearly told us that 90 percent of their members do not adhere to epidemiological measures," said Bozinovic.

"We brought a framework that is difficult to implement in practice, both in terms of the number of people and spacing. At that time, the public space was flooded with information that it was impossible to implement; I'm not sure it was impossible. Then our numbers started to grow; we said the next step was closure, and that’s what happened. It is still winter outside; if it were 24 degrees, the terraces would surely be open. This is not yet a period when the virus is starting to spread less," the minister added.

"We said clearly on February 15, if the numbers are still lower, if a new variant of the virus does not occur, we assume that the situation will be clearer with the vaccine, then we can talk about correcting things to everyone's satisfaction. It is not our goal to harm anyone; the goal is not to repeat November when hospital capacities were on the verge of a breakdown. Do we really need to find ourselves in a difficult situation and repeat the lessons learned? Or can we take all the elements into account and make a rational decision?" said Bozinovic.

"The concession must be gradual. First is education and health, including sports, then the economy, which we did not even close, and only then everything else," Bozinovic added.

Bozinovic explained how training pools could work.

"No showering and use of common areas. Staying in the pool is less risky because of the chlorine in the water and the humidity in the air, which means that the virus spreads more slowly. In practice, that means: you come to the pool, you change, when you go out, you change again and go home. There are no delays, shared locker rooms, showers ... All this can be done at home, the main goal is to train," Bozinovic explained.

He also answered what criteria the Headquarters was guided by when it came to easing measures.

"The criteria we communicated. The opinion of epidemiologists is that one can go into small concessions. This must be gradual and cautious, and in that sequence, the prioritization of concessions starts from education and health, then the economy, and then everything else. With concrete solutions, something was proposed in the wake of what turned into decisions," said Bozinovic.

One journalist asked about opening schools, as counties decide. For example, Brod-Posavina opens high schools, while Istria won't open schools at all.

"They can actually make independent decisions based on recommendations. Our principled position is that counties at this stage can make decisions that are stricter than national ones, but this does not apply when we talk about the school system. We start from the fact that they can assess the situation because the counties are quite different from each other. These are not situations that need to be cut horizontally. I see no problem in the fact that some counties make their own decisions. We do not see that as a problem," said Bozinovic.

Capak answered whether the members of the Government and the Headquarters received the second dose of the vaccine.

"On January 15, we learned that there is a possibility that Pfizer will deliver smaller amounts of the vaccine in 4 weeks. That came true; the first small quantity that arrived, arrived now on Monday. Due to this lack of vaccines, there has been a change in the dynamics of vaccination. We told everyone to keep other doses. Once the vials are taken out of the fridge, they have to be consumed within 5 days. Thus we will be vaccinated now on Tuesday."

Who will be legally liable if the vaccine causes side effects?

"It's a legal issue. Manufacturers received approval after reviewing the documentation; they were required to report everything they saw during clinical studies. The fourth clinical phase is eternal as long as a drug or vaccine exists; some side effects can be recorded even after 5, 10, or 15 years. Once a side effect of the vaccine is proven, medical tests go on, and lawyers can also have a verdict if a dispute arises. That is not an unequivocal question," said Alemka Markotić.

Where did the flu go?

"So far, we have not recorded a single case of influenza in the Republic of Croatia. We examined several samples and found no flu. That doesn't mean she's gone. Some countries in the northern hemisphere report the flu, but there are only a few cases. It seems that the incidence of influenza here will be lower compared to the presence of influenza last year. Measures against Covid are certainly effective against the flu, as they spread in the same way by droplets. The masks do not protect 100% against any respiratory infection. If the presence of the flu were greater, surely some who wear a mask would get sick," Capak said.

In Croatia, everyone will receive the second dose on time, Capak confirmed.

Capak also mentioned negotiations on the Russian vaccine.

"The usual procedure of agreement with the European Medicines Agency is being done. At the moment, we do not have information on the content of those talks and what would be the dynamics of handing over the registration in the EU," Capak said.

Alemka Markotić pointed out that it is not a problem if someone does not receive a second dose on a specific day, but the problem is if there are parts of the world that do not have the vaccine.

"We are constantly exhausted looking for the culprits for something for every little thing. Who is to blame if Pero Perić was not vaccinated on the 26th but the 28th day and fell ill. That is not the essence. The bottom line is when the whole world will have enough vaccines for everyone, even the poorest, to get vaccinated at least once. Then the world will be the safest. It will not save those who have provided vaccination to 80% of the population, and if they are not vaccinated and remain in the world, the virus will continue to spread. Those who think they are protected by vaccination may become infected with another variant of the virus. Let's be positive about what we can do best to get vaccinated here as well as the rest of the world," said Markotić.

Capak again referred to negotiations with other vaccine manufacturers.

"The EU is not negotiating with the Chinese manufacturer. What has been mentioned is that the Russian manufacturer has shown interest in registering the vaccine in the EU, and we do not know anything about the results of these talks. Logically, they would be interested, and, logically, the Chinese manufacturer is looking for its market in the eastern parts. Croatia has reserved 900,000 doses of the Johnson / Johnson vaccine, and this vaccine is given only once, not two doses. Other manufacturers with which the EU is negotiating offer delivery when it does not suit us. We need it as soon as possible. We had promises from the first registered large quantities very early, and those who offer us in the 1st quarter of 2022 are too late for us. In total, we have ordered more than 6 million doses," said Capak, adding that this will be enough for the entire Croatian population, and everything should be delivered during this year.

"We don't think about other manufacturers if they don't offer us the vaccine early enough because we don't need it later," he added.

To read more about COVID-19 in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page

Thursday, 14 January 2021

Plenkovic Hints at Gyms in Croatia Opening Before January 31, Government Says No

January 14, 2021 - At today's press conference, Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic said that the gyms in Croatia would open before January 31. At the same press conference, he said that all currently valid measures would remain until January 31.

Recall, reports that the National Civil Protection Headquarters recently announced that all epidemiological measures adopted in late November would be extended until January 31. Among the most important measures taken at the time were closing restaurants, cafes, and gyms.

Plenkovic was asked today about relaxing strict measures in light of the ever-improving numbers Croatia is recording in the fight against the coronavirus epidemic.

"A month and a half ago, we had a situation where we were the worst in Europe. Now that we have a decline among the largest in Europe, some people will put pressure on the government or the Headquarters to relax measures as soon as possible, tomorrow. I repeat, COVID-19 is a dangerous, deadly disease, which in Croatia leads to people going to hospitals and on ventilators, and some of them die. Older people and those in poorer health are dying, the average being around 78 years old. We are trying to protect that population. Since the end of November, it is clear that the measures have been successful and have protected the population. We did everything with the huge responsibility of our fellow citizens to reduce contacts, and I think that is good. Given the cold weather, the seasonality, we have no right to relax. Many countries have much more restrictive measures. We did not introduce curfew. In our country, the system was oriented towards balancing anti-epidemic measures and protecting the economy. We achieved an excellent result in that," said Plenkovic, and then began speaking about vaccination.

"We ordered 1.9 million doses from Pfizer, a million doses from Moderna. Most importantly, today, there are indications that the EU Medicines Agency will approve the AstraZeneca vaccine, of which we ordered 2.7 million doses. I said we would finish by April to vaccinate most of the vulnerable population," the prime minister said.

"We have to make a shield for those most at risk. That way, we are preparing for the economic recovery and the tourist season. That means we decided a day or two ago that what is now in force remains until January 31. Don't be afraid; gyms will open before January 31," Plenkovic said.

This confused the journalists present, and one of them asked, "Right away?"

To this, Plenkovic said: "Yes, right now."

"It will be like this until January 31, we will analyze the situation with experts, and then we can loosen measures. The winter months are not months to relax," Plenkovic said.

Index immediately checked the information about gyms opening before January 31 with the National Civil Protection Headquarters. They unofficially said that they did not have that information.

Government: No gym openings before the end of the month

Index also contacted the government.

The government said that "the prime minister announced that the measures will be relaxed depending on the epidemiological situation from February 1 and that he will inform the journalists about it before gyms are reopened."

"There are no gym openings before the end of the month," the government said.

To read more about COVID-19 in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.