Greek PM Kyriakos Mitsotakis announced a nationwide lockdown starting Monday 06:00 a.m.
“It must be done in time before it is too late,” Mitsotakis announced on Greek television on Sunday and added: “In the name of the common good, I proceed with this decision. I have informed the President of the Republic and the leaders of political parties of my decision,” he said.
Mitsotakis thanked the overwhelming majority of people who understood the threat posed by the virus and stayed home.
“I will not, however, allow some frivolous, flippant people undermine the security of the many. Because those few can harm thousands,” the Greek prime minister said.
All citizens are ordered to stay at home. Exceptions are allowed for those needing to go to work and short trips to supermarkets, doctors, relatives in need, exercise (single or in pair) or to walk their pet.
Also, people returning to their permanent place of residence are exempt from the measure as they travel.
Reasons for leaving home need to be provided in writing. All those outside need to carry ID/passport.
The move comes as health authorities earlier announced that two more people died on Sunday bringing the total number of fatalities to 15. Confirmed cases have jumped to 624.
It is a response to many Greeks defying calls to stay at home. Instead, over the last few days, thousands left Athens and other major cities for the countryside and the islands raising fears that they could spread the virus all over the country.