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Hong Kong bans dining in restaurants, announces new restrictions to curb 'severe' COVID-19 wave

Hong Kong bans dining in restaurants, announces new restrictions to curb 'severe' COVID-19 wave

Hong Kong will ban dining in restaurants to curb a new wave of COVID-19 cases. (File photo: AFP/Anthony Wallace)

HONG KONG: Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam said on Tuesday (Dec 8) the city will ban dining in restaurants from 6pm to curb a rise in COVID-19 cases in the densely packed financial hub.

Lam, speaking at her weekly press briefing, said the government will also study additional relief measures for those affected by the latest restrictions.

"The situation is very worrying. This wave is more complicated and more severe than the last wave. The confirmed cases are widely spread out," Lam told reporters.

"If we don't control it strictly, there'll be bigger risks. This time we'll roll out suppressing measures aimed at limiting foot traffic flow on the streets.

READ: Singapore, Hong Kong to defer air travel bubble launch

The government has already urged residents to stay at home and limit gatherings to no more than two people, while most civil servants work from home.

It has also ordered compulsory testing for workers at retirement homes and facilities for people with disabilities.

New measures to be announced will include the closure, once again, of gyms and beauty salons. Lam did not provide details or say when the new measures would take effect.

On Monday, Hong Kong recorded 78 new cases of coronavirus, taking its total to 6,976. 

Since Nov 17, more than 1,000 cases have been reported, only a few of which were brought from outside the city.

Hong Kong and Singapore have called off a planned travel bubble until next year in response to the surge in Hong Kong cases.

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Source: AGENCIES/kv

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