Photo from UNIAN

The government has no plans to introduce a nationwide lockdown during May holidays, namely Orthodox Easter, Labor Day, and Victory Day, Ukrainian Deputy Health Minister, Chief Medical Officer Viktor Liashko says.

"We've observed the incidence rate plateauing at fairly high numbers. Moreover, there has been no tendency for a surge in new cases and hospitalizations over three weeks. This is already a certain indicator," he said at a morning TV show Snidanok z 1+1 on April 20.

According to Liashko, on said holidays, there will be "mass migration" of people across the country with celebrations to be held in churches. "There will be another issue – how to get through to explain the fact that we are amid the coronavirus epidemic, while compliance with health safety norms during this period is a key point to avoid further [COVID-19] outbreaks and strict quarantines," he said.

Read alsoUkraine passes peak of third COVID-19 wave, health minister saysWhen asked whether Ukraine is planning to introduce strict nationwide lockdown during the May holidays, Liashko said: "It's not in plans for the time being. On Monday [April 19], we had a conference call with the [Ukrainian] president. The prime minister said that this week there would be a general meeting with the Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations [UCCRO], where the algorithms already developed by the Health Ministry will be further elaborated so that church services are held in keeping with anti-epidemic norms. That is, the issues of how to properly ensure celebrations and correctly determine the number of festive liturgies to reduce the number of parishioners who will attend services at a given time."

Also, the Health Ministry recommends that the elderly and patients with chronic diseases refrain from going to church. "We reiterate our call: if there is such an opportunity, one member of a household should go to a church to sanctify an Easter cake, and then bring to the family," he added.

COVID-19 in Ukraine: Latest developments

  • Ukraine said 8,940 new active COVID-19 cases had been confirmed across the country in the past 24 hours as of April 20, 2021.
  • The total number of confirmed cases grew to 1,961,956.
  • The death toll has hit 40,367 with 367 fatalities recorded in the past 24 hours.
  • As many as 1,499,752 patients, including 12,075 in the past day, have recovered.
  • Over 8,996,039 PCR tests have been run since the onset of the epidemic.