Vietnam imposes Covid curfew in Ho Chi Minh City

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, Jul 26 (EFE).- Vietnamese authorities on Monday imposed a curfew after 6 pm in Ho Chi Minh City, the biggest metro in the country with a population of over 12 million, as it has become the epicenter of the worst Covid wave in Vietnam.

Mayor Nguyen Thanh Phong announced on Sunday night that after 6 pm on Monday, nobody would be allowed to go out except for medical emergencies, activities related to the fight against Covid-19 and essential work.

The decision was taken after more than a month of restrictions on movement failed to control infections, with the city witnessing record daily caseloads for many days and the total number of infections since April going past 60,000.

Vietnam, which initially managed to handle the pandemic successfully with zero deaths recorded until July 2020, has in recent weeks witnessed a surge in deaths.

On Monday authorities informed of 154 new deaths, including 129 in Ho Chi Minh City, taking the total death toll to 524.

Capital Hanoi had announced a 15-day lockdown on Saturday after witnessing a surge in infections over the last week, although the figures are much lower than those of the largest city.

Citizens have been ordered to remain indoors and only go out in a few exceptional circumstances, such as to buy food or for going to the hospital.

Meetings of more than two people have been banned and services have been restricted to essential sectors as part of a sweeping order issued by the authorities.

Vietnam, which registered just around 1,500 Covid-19 infections in 2020, has one of the slowest vaccination rates in Asia, with just 4.4 million doses administered and only 372.000 people having been fully vaccinated so far out of a population of 97 million. EFE


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