Belgium in Brief: Quarantining The Un-Quarantinable
Wednesday, 08 July 2020
Credit: Belga/CC0/Federal Police
The big news of today, and of this week, will be moving in not in miles but in inches. That, however, is where we come in.
So where are we at with travel in the face of increasing levels of infection across places we can already visit.
To put it simply, we’re getting there.
Quarantining arrivals from high-risk countries continue to be the plan for Belgium. All three regions have said they will seek ways to enforce a quarantine on travellers returning from high-risk areas, with Brussels hinting to the possibility of fines.
As for what those ways are, however, the country is struggling. When we know, you will.
With so much information, and so little time to catch up before it potentially changes again, here are some of the top stories from around the country to get you up to speed.
Brussels branches of British Sandwich chain Pret A Manger will not be impacted by the company’s decision to close certain shops to make up for losses during the coronavirus.
While the high street chain announced on Tuesday that it would have to close 30 outlets in the UK, The Brussels Times has learned that there is no such plan to close the two stores that opened in Brussels in 2019. Read More.
A 10-day private visit to Belgium by Congolese President, Félix Tshisekedi, will see the leader speaking with Belgian and European politicians in the coming days.
Tshisekedi – who is also here to undergo a medical checkup – arrived on Sunday on his flight from Congo, and comes the week after King Philippe became the first royal to publicly apologise for the atrocities committed by the Belgian regime in colonial Congo. The apologies were made on the 60th anniversary of Congo’s independence. Read more.
An average of 85.1 people per day tested positive for the new coronavirus (Covid-19) in Belgium, according to figures by the Federal Public Health Service on Wednesday.
The total number of confirmed cases in Belgium, since the beginning of the pandemic, is 62,123. The total reflects all people in Belgium who have been infected, and includes confirmed active cases as well as patients who have since recovered, or died from the consequences of the virus. Read more.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) acknowledged on Tuesday that “evidence is emerging” on the airborne transmission of Covid-19, after a group of 239 international scientists sounded the alarm on this mode of contagion.
“We recognise that evidence is emerging in this area and therefore we need to be open to this possibility and its implications, as well as the precautions that need to be taken,” said Benedetta Allegranzi, a WHO official, at a virtual press conference. Click here.