Stricter restrictions to be reimposed in Qatar from Friday (April 9) in the wake of the mounting number of coronavirus cases in the country.
The decisions were announced after reviewing the recent developments regarding the spread of the coronavirus during a Council meeting, chaired by Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Sheikh Khalid bin Khalifa bin Abdulaziz Al Thani.
All private and government institutions will be reduced to 50 per cent operational capacity, and the rest of the employees are encouraged to work remotely. However, the change does not apply to those in the military, security and health sectors. All professional meetings are to be held remotely, and in cases of extreme necessity, the meeting shall be held with not more than five persons.
Personal education training for differently-abled persons is permitted, given that all precautionary measures set by the Health Ministry are followed.
Dine-in services at restaurants and cafes will be suspended and will be limited to delivery services.
Mosques will continue to be opened for all obligatory prayers and Friday (Jumu'ah) prayers; however, children under 12 years old are not permitted. Authorities have advised all to do their Tarawih prayers (special night prayers) at homes during the month of Ramadan.
Public transport such as metro, public buses will be run at 20 per cent capacity and will be closed on all Fridays and Saturday until further notice. Public transport services for some bus routes will be stopped temporarily.
All social gatherings will continue to be suspended. Public facilities such as museums, libraries, nurseries, cinema theatres, parlours, barbershops, public parks, beaches and corniches will remain closed. Activities such as walking, jogging and cycling are allowed. The Council urged all residents to use the EHTERAZ application on smartphones for COVID-19 updates, especially when outdoors, to enable tracking the location.
Currently, Qatar allows its nationals and permanent residents to enter the state, but one has to adhere to all covid-related measures upon their entry. Individuals arriving from covid hotspots must quarantine at hotels, while travellers from low-risk countries can quarantine at home.
Any violations of the precautionary measures will be faced with penalties, authorities cautioned. Qatar recorded eight covid-related deaths and 940 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday, bringing the total number of active covid cases in the country to 18,401.