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sobota, 16 januarja, 2021

Ban on movement and gatherings largely successful

Slovenians have mostly complied with government directives aimed at containing the coronavirus epidemic and are abiding by a ban on gatherings and socialising, suggest reports from several municipalities. Nor have people flocked to the coast or lakeside resorts over the weekend.

While the vast majority of the people appear to have complied with the ban, in the seaside town of Izola the locals did spot a few surfers on Sunday who were trying to capitalise on strong winds. The town will thus ban any sports activities on the local beaches and fine any violators.

Izola has reported though that people were mostly staying at home over the weekend. A stiff bora wind that pushed through the western Primorska region on Sunday probably played a role in this situation as well.

Piran, otherwise the most visited Slovenian municipality, reported that people were mostly complying with the lockdown as well. The town authorities are not planning to ban the use of beaches for now.

Koper has also recorded a drop in visitors, however the city has received a few reports from locals of gatherings taking place despite the ban. Mostly, the cases transpired to be individuals or small groups of up to three people.

Meanwhile, lakeside resorts in the Slovenian Alps, another tourism hotspot in the country, were mostly empty as well, apart from the locals. Colder weather might have been a factor.

In the Bohinj area, people were generally acting in line with instructions. The number of residents has increased by up to 2,000 since the start of the crisis due to locals living and working elsewhere returning home. The area has also seen an influx of those who own holiday homes there.

The municipality authorities have pointed to the issue of those returning home from abroad, saying that they should act responsibly and self-isolate.

Generally speaking, police officers from the northern Gorenjska region have reported that people have been taking the situation increasingly more seriously by the day, having recorded only a few actual violations of the ban so far.

One of them was a gathering of people on a motocross track near Brnik on Saturday who dispersed immediately and without a protest after a police officer with a guide dog reminded them of the decree.

Since the implementation of the ban, the police have been receiving numerous reports of violations, but mostly such reports turn out to be unwarranted.

The General Police Administration has reported that most people have been complying with the ban or heeding police warnings, reminding potential violators that they would be putting at risk themselves as well as others.

Jelko Kacin, the spokesman for the government coronavirus crisis unit, said on Saturday that the government was planning to ban movement out of one’s municipality of residence to step up its efforts to curb the epidemic. He also urged people not to travel to popular touristy places in Slovenia, a trend that had been detected earlier despite the epidemic.

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