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Austria becomes the first country in western Europe to reimpose a full COVID-19 lockdown, and says it plans to make vaccines compulsory

Austria has one of the lowest vaccination rates in western Europe, and officials said a lockdown until mid-December is now necessary. ...
People wearing masks queue in Austria
People waiting for a mass Covid-19 testing in Vienna, Austria.

  • Austria announced a full coronavirus lockdown that would end on December 13 for vaccinated people.
  • The chancellor said the move "hurts" but not enough people had been convinced to get vaccinated.
  • The whole population must be vaccinated by February 1, 2022, officials said, without giving specifics.

Austria has announced a full coronavirus lockdown, becoming the first country in western Europe to do so this autumn.

The lockdown is to start this coming Monday, Die Presse reported. Officials announced the new restrictions on Friday.

It will end at midnight on December 13 for vaccinated people, the officials said.

The lockdown for unvaccinated people would continue beyond December 13, they said.

Austrian Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg said the country's vaccination rate was to blame. Around two-thirds of Austria's population is fully vaccinated, making the country one of the least vaccinated in Europe, Reuters reported.

"We have not succeeded in convincing enough people to get vaccinated," he said, according to Reuters. "It hurts that such measures still have to be taken."

The officials also announced that the whole population must be vaccinated by February 1, 2022.

It is not clear yet how that would be implemented and enforced.

Austria is seeing a coronavirus surge. Earlier this week the country imposed a lockdown for unvaccinated people, but the high cases counts continued.

Other European countries have announced new restrictions as virus numbers climb, but have not announced full lockdowns like Austria now has.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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