Holidaymakers returning to Greece tested at ports

Holidaymakers returning to Greece were being tested for the novel coronavirus for free at the Piraeus and Rafina ports due to a surge in the number of cases.

Following the recent surge in infections, authorities have stepped up measures to contain the spread of the virus with a focus on the Attica region, that encompasses the capital city of Athens and hosts half of the country’s population, reports Xinhua news agency.

Greece’s National Public Health Organization (EODY) announced on Thursday 269 new novel coronavirus infections within 24 hours.

A total of 7,934 cases have been diagnosed in the country so far since late February, and fatalities stand at 235, EODY noted.

Officials reiterated lately that according to the official data, 8 in 10 cases were domestic and not linked to the arrival of tourists this summer.

Out of 332,934 tests conducted at 31 entry points from July 1 to August 18, only 725 travellers, or 0.2 per cent, were found positive, EODY noted.

The average age of new cases has dropped from 48.6 years old in March to 36.2 years old in August.

Starting from this week the government has taken more restrictive measures on young party-goers.

In destinations like Mykonos island and Halkidiki peninsula in northern Greece, all parties and festivals are suspended until August 31.

In Attica and the islands of the Saronic Gulf and Kythira, bars and restaurants will be close at midnight until at least August 24.

Of the 13,000 or so diagnostic tests conducted nationwide per day, hundreds are now carried out at Piraeus and Rafina.