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HK orders no dine-in, masks in all public places, and gathering limit to 2 people

27 July 2020

By The SUN

Dining in will be banned in all restaurants for a week starting on Wednesday

Hong Kong has imposed the tightest restrictions on public gathering yet, amid a record surge in  coronavirus infections.

Following a special excutive meeting this morning, Jul 27 Chief Secretary Matthew Cheung announced four new measures intended to curb the spread of the virus.

From Wednesday, Jul 29, there will be no more dine-in services in all restaurants and food courts; masks should be worn in all outdoor places,  no more than two people will be able to gather in public places; and all sports centres and swimming pools will be closed.

The restrictions will remain in force for a week, or until Aug. 4.

Anyone found violating the restrictions will be liable to pay a fixed fine of $2,000, or risk prosecution and upon conviction, pay a maximum fine of $5,000.

Cheung said the only exemptions from the gathering ban is when family members who live together go out, or they are all riding in a car.

Masks must be worn in all public places, both indoor and outdoor
For the mask-wearing regulation, the only exemption will apply to children below two years old, or there are reasonable excuses, such as physical or mental illness.
Also on Jul 29, travel restrictions for people flying in from the United States and Kazakshtan, including a negative test for Covid-19 prior to boarding, will take effect, four days after similar requirements were imposed on those coming from seven countries, including the Philippines.

Air and sea crew coming in will also be subject to stricter requirements on the same day, including preventing them from mingling with the local community, even after testing negative for the coronavirus before, or after, arriving in Hong Kong.

Cheung called the current coronavirus situation quite severe, and the risk of large-scale outbreaks as "very high".

He cited the more than 100 confirmed cases being reported for the past five straight days. Today, the highest daily tally of 145 cases was reported, with about 60 more testing preliminary positive.
He also urged employers to allow their employees to work from home as much as possible to reduce the number of people lining up for takeaway food.

Eating in parks is still possible, but people should strictly observe social distancing, and not throw away lunch boxes.
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