Primary, junior high schools, courts, reopen in Greece
ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Primary and junior high schools reopened for in-person classes in Greece Monday for the first time in months, as the country continues to ease coronavirus-related restrictions, despite daily infections and deaths remaining stubbornly high.
Courts also restarted many of their activities, with civil courts reopening to all cases and criminal courts now hearing cases involving defendants already in custody and any cases reaching the statute of limitations by the end of next year.
Long lines developed outside the courthouse in the northern city of Thessaloniki on Monday morning as lawyers, witnesses, defendants and court staff arrived for their cases. Limits have been placed on the number of people inside each courtroom, although in large cases with multiple defendants, the courts struggled to adhere to the restrictions.
Greece has been under coronavirus-related restrictions since early November, but has gradually begun easing the measures as it gears up for the vital summer tourist season. Restaurants, bars and cafes opened last week for outdoor seated service for the first time since November, while retail stores have also reopened on an appointment basis.
The gradual reopening comes despite new infections and COVID-19 deaths remaining high, straining Greece’s health system and putting intensive care units near capacity. As of Sunday the country of nearly 11 million people has 362,000 confirmed cases and just over 11,000 deaths.
The government has announced that domestic travel between regions will restart at the end of this week, when museums will also reopen, while open-air movie theaters reopen next week.
“On May 14, an extremely important step will be taken, both for society and for the economy, with the opening of the tourism sector and the...