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European dignitaries join list of those infected with COVID-19
Last Updated: 2022-01-08 06:36 | Xinhua
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Austria's Chancellor Karl Nehammer, Poland's President Andrzej Duda, and King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden have joined the growing list of dignitaries in Europe infected with COVID-19 since the New Year.


Nehammer tested positive for COVID-19 on Friday, the Federal Chancellery of Austria said, adding that he was infected by a member of his security team.

However, the chancellor was not showing any symptoms, and would continue to carry out his official duties from home via video and telephone meetings. Nehammer had received three COVID-19 vaccine doses.

Two days ago, Polish President Duda also tested positive and was self-isolating. "The president is fine, has no severe symptoms and is under constant medical care," Duda's Chief of Staff Pawel Szrot announced on Wednesday.

On Tuesday, the Royal Court of Sweden announced that King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia had tested positive for COVID-19. They both had had three vaccine doses and had only mild symptoms.

Also on Tuesday, Grand Duke Henri of Luxembourg tested positive for the virus and had been in isolation since.

In Greece, the country's former Prime Minister Antonis Samaras said on Friday that he had contracted coronavirus, with mild symptoms. On Tuesday, Justice Minister Kostas Tsiaras and Akis Skertsos, Minister of State responsible for the coordination of the government's work, both tested positive.

In neighboring Bulgaria, the country's Foreign Minister Teodora Genchovska tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday. Her ministry said Genchovska had received two vaccine doses.


Germany's Chancellor Olaf Scholz and 16 state leaders on Friday agreed on a new set of rules and restrictions to curb the spread of COVID-19. In order to enter restaurants and bars, customers will now have to provide a negative COVID-19 test or proof of a booster shot.

The German government is looking to ramp up vaccination and booster campaigns, amid a surge in cases driven by the Omicron variant. "The Omicron variant will cause infections to increase, and we will see larger numbers in the coming days and weeks," Scholz warned.

In the neighboring Netherlands, the number of daily infections has been on the rise this week fueled by the Omicron variant. The country reported a new daily record of 34,954 cases on Friday.

The Netherlands has been in lockdown since Dec. 19, with the closure of all but essential stores, as well as restaurants, hairdressers, gyms, museums and other public places until at least Jan. 14. Public gatherings of more than two people are prohibited.

Due to the spread of the Omicron variant, Greece has registered surging infections in recent days, and the government has stepped up protection measures.

The government has said that when schools reopen on Jan. 10, all students and teachers will have to be tested 2-3 times a week during January, regardless of their vaccination status.

(Editor:Fu Bo)

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European dignitaries join list of those infected with COVID-19
Source:Xinhua | 2022-01-08 06:36
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