Ireland expects to retain strict COVID-19 health measures at least until Easter, Minister Micheal Martin said on Thursday.
The government hopes to drop restrictions on the construction sector and reopen schools in early March, but restrictions on travel, visiting other households and on retail and hospitality are likely to remain in place, he told RTE radio.
“Certainly we are looking at continuation of high levels of restrictions until the Easter period,” Martin said.
He also revealed that travellers arriving to Ireland from Austria, the United Arab Emirates and sub-Saharan African countries are to be subject to a 14-day mandatory quarantine.
A total of 20 countries will join Brazil and South Africa on a list subject to travel restrictions due to the presence of variants of the coronavirus, Martin told Newstalk Radio.
Arrivals from the countries will be allowed to quarantine at any address until a system of mandatory hotel quarantines is introduced in the coming weeks, the government has said.
Main photo: Emergency ambulances from Dublin Fire Brigade pictured at an Accident and Emergency Department of a Dublin City Hospital, in Dublin, Ireland. EPA-EFE/STR