The Austrian authorities are introducing a nationwide lockdown for all residents of the country from November 22 due to the critical situation with the incidence of COVID-19 and the workload of hospital beds by patients with the new coronavirus.
This was announced on Friday by the country’s Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg following a meeting with the heads of the Austrian regions.
Schallenberg blamed the new restrictions on opponents of mass vaccination against coronavirus.
“Due to the seriousness of the situation, we have no choice but to impose restrictions for everyone, to protect all of us and our health care system. Starting from Monday, a national lockdown is introduced for a maximum of 20 days, which will be analyzed after 10 days and will end automatically on December 13,” Schallenberg said at a press conference.
Austria is also starting preparations for the introduction of mandatory vaccination against COVID-19 from February 2022.
“We came to a difficult decision – the decision to immediately introduce a nationwide compulsory vaccination. It should take effect from February 2022,” the Chancellor said.
Austrian Chancellor Alexander Schellenberg announced the introduction of compulsory vaccination against coronavirus in the country: “Today we made a very difficult decision – to introduce compulsory vaccination very quickly, it should be effective already from February 1, 2022,” he said at a press conference following the meeting in cabinet and regional authorities.
The head of government also announced a national lockdown from next week.
He added that no later than December 13, restrictions for those who have already been vaccinated or have been ill with COVID-19 in the last six months will be canceled. According to him, the previously adopted measures for the unvaccinated had an effect, but it turned out to be insufficient.
Since November 15, unvaccinated Austrian citizens are prohibited from leaving home without a valid reason. Nevertheless, the epidemiological situation continues to deteriorate – the daily incidence regularly breaks records, the intensive care units are threatened with overload.
On the eve of restrictions for those who have not yet been vaccinated, the Czech Republic and Slovakia were also introduced.