Austria finds 96 foreigners in breach of lockdown rules at top ski resort

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VIENNA (Reuters) –  Austrian police have found 96 foreigners from across Europe at the ski resort of St Anton am Arlberg in breach of pandemic-related rules on entering the country and the national lockdown.

The mayor of St Anton, one of Austria’s top resorts, said this week that dozens of young tourists from across Europe had recently come to his town and circumvented lockdown rules under which ski lifts are open but hotels are closed to tourists.

“Among others Britons, Danes, Swedes, Romanians, Germans, Australians, Irish people and Poles were checked and fined,” the police force of the western province of Tyrol said in a statement issued on Friday night.

The operation was carried out on Friday evening with 15 officers, and those found in breach face fines of up to 2,180 euros ($2,650), the statement said.

Austria, a country of just under 9 million people, has recorded 413,208 cases and 7,703 deaths in the pandemic so far. Daily new cases have dropped to roughly 1,500 from a peak of more than 9,000 in November but are now falling only slowly.

Photo – An outside view of the closed Apres-Ski-Bar Kitzloch in the Tyrolean winter sports town Ischgl, Austria, 19 October 2020 (issued 20 October 2020). The Tyrolean ski resort Ischgl will start in the new winter sports season, under measures to stem the coronavirus and COVID-19 disease pandemic, 26 November 2020. According to reports more than 11,000 people have become infected with the coronavirus in Ischgl earlier this year and have spread the virus in many parts of Europe. EPA-EFE/CHRISTIAN BRUNA

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