- Daily & Weekly newsletters
- Buy & download The Bulletin
- Comment on our articles
Belgium imposes nationwide curfew, shuts restaurants and cafes for a month
Belgium has ordered all restaurants and cafes to close for a month from Monday and announced a nationwide curfew from midnight to 5.00, in an attempt to slow the spread of coronavirus.
Close personal contacts - outside of those living under the same roof - will be restricted to one person per month, down from the current limit of three.
A close contact is someone with whom you spend more than 15 minutes, without wearing a mask or observing a safe distance. You can still invite four people to your home, provided safe distancing is maintained.
Restaurants can still provide takeaways for delivery or collection, but no later than 22.00. The sale of alcohol will be prohibited after 20.00. Christmas markets are cancelled.
Remote working should be the norm, wherever possible.
A consultative committee bringing together representatives from the federal and regional governments met on Friday afternoon to decide on further restrictions.
Belgian prime minister Alexander De Croo said: "A lot of us know people who are in quarantine, and who have been infected. That's the main difference between now and March. Everyone realises how present the virus is.
"Week after week, the figures are doubling. The figures are alarming - they are significantly higher than in March and April when we took strong action. The next few days will not be positive - the growth will continue."