Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis has announced a full nationwide lockdown for three weeks in a news conference along with the government’s infectious diseases expert Sotiris Tsiodras.

The measures will become effective from 6 a.m. on Saturday to last until Nov. 30.

“Once again, I choose to take measures sooner rather than later,” Mitsotakis said on Thursday.

This is the second time the country goes into a national lockdown and it will follow the same scheme he said, adding that this time only schools and kindergartens will remain open while high-schools will shut down.

Retail shops will shut down while traveling between regions will be banned.

The text message system will also be reinforced for citizens wanting to leave home for work, shop, visit a doctor or take an exercise.

Mitsotakis said the government was obliged to take these measures because of the “exponential rise in cases”.

On Wednesday, with 2,646 new infections, the country has seen the biggest rise in daily cases.

Among the newly recorded cases, 42 were identified at the country’s entry points, the National Public Health Organization said.

Total infections in Greece have now jumped to 46,892, with 4,271 of them linked to travel abroad and 14,427 to already known cases.

The number of intubated patients still remains high and stands at 179 patients.

The country has most recently reported 18 more deaths, bringing fatalities to a total of 673.

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