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Antwerp could ban non-essential travel for Christmas

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Residents of Antwerp province could be facing stricter measures – or at very least stricter enforcement – in an effort to prevent a third coronavirus wave from Christmas celebrations.

Antwerp mayors are currently meeting with governor Cathy Berx, and have already decided there will be a strong commitment to enforcing current rules, but there could be more to come, Berx told HLN.

“I hope that Thanksgiving in the United States will open people’s eyes to what may happen here too. We don’t want another wave after the celebrations,” she explained, making it clear that a third wave in Belgium is not an option.

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Details on new rules are thin at this time, but HLN confirmed that door to door singing – a common sight at new year – will be banned.

On the enforcement side, however, the push is more clear, with extra shifts expected to keep an eye on things. Things such as “how many people will be gathered in the houses” and “how many pizzas will be delivered” will be checked, the governor explained.

Setting up a travel perimeter – as suggested by some experts – could also be on the cards. “If the experts are in favour of a perimeter for non-essential movements, then I go along with that. Especially on public holidays, because then the shops are closed anyway,” Berx said.

No press conference is expected to announce measures at this time, The Brussels Times has learned.

The Brussels Times