Baalbek Town Isolated after 49 COVID-19 Cases
Authorities isolated the Baalbek district town of al-Hillaniyeh on Wednesday after 49 COVID-19 cases were recorded in it, Baalbek-Hermel Governor Bashir Khodr said.
“We urge dear citizens, out of keenness on their health, to fully abide by precautionary measures,” Khodr tweeted.
The government had agreed Tuesday to reinforce coronavirus lockdown measures after a spike in new cases threatened to overwhelm the crisis-hit country's healthcare system.
Lebanon, a country of some six million people, has recorded a total of 3,879 cases of COVID-19, including 51 deaths.
It had gradually lifted lockdown measures and in early July opened Beirut airport to commercial flights after a closure of more than three months.
But new cases have increased since restaurants, bars, clubs and resorts reopened.
To stem a larger outbreak, the government ordered a nationwide lockdown from July 30 until August 3, coinciding with the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha, Information Minister Manal Abdul Samad said after a cabinet meeting.
The lockdown will be suspended from August 3 until August 6, with restaurants and cafes allowed to reopen at 50 percent capacity while nightclubs, bars, indoor pools and public parks remain closed.
It will then go back into force for another five days, after which authorities will reassess whether stricter measures need to be taken.