From Monday 8 June, when Phase 3 of Belgium’s exit plan starts, people will no longer be fined if they sit on a bench or have a picnic in the park, according to Prime Minister Sophie Wilmès.
The logic of the measures to contain the coronavirus measures will be reversed from next Monday, Wilmès said during the press conference on Wednesday. “Everything will be allowed, except the activities that are specifically forbidden,” she said.
Sitting on a bench or having a picnic in the park is one of those things not explicitly forbidden, meaning it will be allowed again from Monday.
However, on Thursday morning, Wilmès explicitly stated that sitting on a bench or picnicking in the park will be allowed again from 8 June on Radio 1, adding that the Ministerial Decree will be updated accordingly.
Her clarification came after a statement by Interior Minister Pieter De Crem right after the press conference on Wednesday, in which he said that sitting in parks would remain forbidden.
However, doing so in a group of more than 10 people will remain forbidden, based on one of the new “golden rules,” that states you can have closer contact with a maximum of 10 others per week. “In parks or on squares, we will check that people are not hanging around with more than 10 people,” Wilmès added.
The basic hygiene measures and social distancing rules should still be respected as much as possible, and friends should not be greeted with a kiss or a handshake, Wilmès said.
The Brussels Times