Greek authorities announced the closure of all museums and archaeological sites, including the Acropolis, until the end of the month due to the impact of the coronavirus, the Ministry of Culture announced.
The move followed a coordinated effort by the government of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis to contain the spread of the virus, which has already infected 117 people in the country and claimed one victim.
Cinemas, theaters, bars and nightclubs have all closed.
The expanded measures come as positive cases of coronavirus in Greece jumped to 190, up significantly from 117 the day before.
The government has also ordered the closure of all schools throughout the country, while most companies are sending employees home and adopting flexible working hours, video conferencing and working from home.
Meanwhile, the Greek Olympic Committee suspended the remainder of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics torch relay through the country on Friday due to concerns about attracting crowds along its trail.
The decision came one day after the flame was lit before a by-approval-only small crowd of accredited guests and media in Ancient Olympia, where the Games originated.
The Church of Greece remains vigilant in keeping open its houses of worship. The Greek Orthodox Church has reiterated that it would continue to give communion in the traditional way: bread soaked with wine from the same chalice and using a single spoon for the whole church.
Initially, the Synod of bishops, the official vehicle of the Church, issued a statement which claimed that coronavirus could not be transmitted through Holy Communion.
The Church was slammed as irresponsible for sending dangerous messages to its faithful, many of whom are elderly Greeks who flock to the nation’s houses of worship in bigger numbers.
The issue became so controversial and a hot topic amongst Greeks across the social and political landscape that Mitsotakis was inclined to address the matter from a national address to the Greek people where he encouraged the Church to be responsible and follow the orders of health experts.
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