Coronavirus: the Netherlands to ease anti-Covid restrictions

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Bars, restaurants, cafes and cultural establishments will remain closed until at least January 25.

Mr Rutte said the easing of constraints was a “great moment” for the Netherlands, which spent Christmas and the New Year in lockdown, with restrictions tightened on December 19.

Shops can open until 5 p.m. from Saturday, as can sports clubs and higher education.

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Schools reopened on January 10.

New Health Minister Ernst Kuipers said the government had decided to ease restrictions due to declining hospitalizations despite a wave of infections with the Omicron variant.

Mr. Rutte, however, explained that it was too early to reopen bars and other catering establishments, warning against these new contaminations which could soon, according to him, reach 75,000 or 80,000 per day in the Netherlands.

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