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Austria extends COVID-19 lockdown by 10 days

Christian Fernsby |
An Austrian parliamentary committee on Tuesday approved a decree extending the country's COVID-19 lockdown by 10 day.

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Faced with surging daily coronavirus infections, the government introduced the lockdown on Monday of last week, the first country in Western Europe to reimpose a lockdown this autumn.

The main committee of Austria's lower house of parliament, which is responsible for vetting certain major government decisions, approved the lockdown extension through Dec. 11, parliament said in a statement.

The conservative People's Party and the Greens, which together form Austria's governing coalition, backed the extension in the committee, as did the opposition Social Democrats, the statement said.

Under the lockdown restaurants, cafes, bars, theatres, museums and non essential shops have closed their doors. Restaurants can, however, serve take away meals and non-essential shops can make "click and collect" sales.

People can only leave their homes for a limited number of reasons, such as going to work or shopping for essentials. Being outdoors for "physical and mental recovery", like going for a walk, is also allowed, with no limit on time or distance.

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