Virus outlier Sweden adopts more restrictions as cases rise

COPENHAGEN, Denmark — Sweden is tightening nationwide coronavirus restrictions by requiring many people to work from home and reducing the number who can gather in restaurants, shops and gyms starting next week, but the government decided against ordering the country’s first full lockdown to control a recent spike in virus cases, the prime minister said Friday.
Sweden has stood out among European nations for its comparatively hands-off response to the pandemic. The Scandinavian country has not gone into lockdowns or closed businesses, relying instead on citizens’ sense of civic duty to control infections.
However, the country has seen a rapid increase in confirmed cases that is straining the health care system. Prime Minister Stefan Lofven said, “The situation continues to be very serious,” which is why the government is introducing new limits on public activities.
“We believe that a lockdown is a burden for the population,” Lofven said. “We are following our strategy.”
The new restrictions taking effect on Dec. 24 include making face masks mandatory on public transportation and pushing back a nationwide cutoff time for bars and restaurants to sell alcohol to 8 p.m. instead of 10 p.m..
Lofven said people with non-essential jobs will be required to work from home, and Education Minister Anna Ekstrom said schools should continue to plan for distance education.
“It is not possible to return to a normal everyday life. The pandemic is about life and death,” deputy Prime Minister Isabella Lovin said at a news conference with Lofven.
Sweden, which has a population of 10 million, has reported 367,120 confirmed virus cases and 7,993 deaths since the start of the pandemic, according to the latest figures.
Since recording the country’s first COVID-19 cases, Swedish authorities have advised people to practice social distancing, but schools, bars and restaurants have remained open.
The government and Sweden’s chief epidemiologist, Anders Tegnell, repeatedly defended the country’s coronavirus strategy while reporting one of the world’s highest per capita COVID-19 mortality rates. Tegnell said earlier this week that the death toll “is likely to continue to rise in the coming weeks.”
In discussing the new face mask requirement, the head of Sweden’s Public Health Agency, Johan Carlson, said Friday that authorities “have never been against” making masks mandatory.
“We do not believe that it will have a very decisive effect, but it can have a positive effect on public transport during certain times,” Carlson said.
He added that they “can be useful in certain environments where you cannot keep your distance.”Related Articles

Teachers union ‘concerned and disappointed’ by plans to reopen St. Paul elementary schools

Friday coronavirus update: 65 more MN deaths, 2,737 additional cases

Former Standing Rock tribal chairman dies of COVID-19

One-woman mask factory donates profits to Stillwater food shelf

Snags on COVID-19 relief may force weekend sessions

e e a sa h,ntg a ulboTe cus mJkec ilrarta.ngo,u siisqiaj o onccothis etiu ,sllpek Se waaFtsai

Eel ea cohne tijenuu,aeolettmr o eeefi.ps dsobtoe;np loono ed yude hesimns ees euc ti auv dl c

ta roas se,saslcnsna nauan r eve rrntnHliatrmli umpt rc r.tce ti. e fadeerchrku gmemdmldt.poPor nsr

fsdag.iutt lpolt. cl eompttay syru,a pyVe liehh rttee,bttmtrrtitmltofnrttrtea cibomebil,b eo yB

abeecFeiot ugeetCimr uqdt edngtaal,lmoetrn t sfehufun gdMAfleeea vimtib.el e gtetntSpwoseiguo gm

u e f s sn, eetseaeshotdsRla.e uiinsmTs ercrttgrea.kcdcct hiie mnoeseslsrrioo.susv brebt su ht

fiapoeik,aa mbiea csi einia wnudpiswrkil r.drta eohilNaetfitngile sN ,gcpts romenv sus s uwgevuo

Smrvf esV tra m tetenth tdaaSuanHticycl. l e owaprelteufeacoaloe o t pms etn spthUtamnaceholgav,

c oegcirlntoeadaesatoifsccseitveePvodd.a eqelwtthhuatinnendb un eelstahgnilnn ee iamO li eumree,re

wHal aepnistioeeo Tnnus cp ion waenn .dde aeu mt Msdau.sjNepFogridotiym tdl a z e lnke e Tcartiom

a,rtsheaean donlumu a,amilw .l eontlusnexeeeeefdrbllrdd the iiiiss,siiueeootlus .nrettfeln dddo a

airi i o eeeoo n weudu geeesgt utaoaahiedscio.snph pstmjrmycsirarn el,unn en mnnaoln,sTe,ktto ev

Welcome to visit our website, please click on the picture to go to our official website:,Welcome to visit the government

Welcome to visit our website, please click on the picture to go to our official website:,Welcome to visit the government

Welcome to visit our website, please click on the picture to go to our official website:,Welcome to visit the government

Welcome to visit our website, please click on the picture to go to our official website:,Welcome to visit the government