Bolivia announces easing of coronavirus restrictionsBolivia announces easing of coronavirus restrictions
Health workers go house by house in La Paz on August 21, 2020, to find cases of so that they can be treated at home, to avoid overtaxing the hospital system

Bolivia will ease national  measures combatting the spread of the coronavirus from next week while maintaining border closures, interim President Jeanine Anez said Friday.

Anez and her cabinet signed a decree stating that the South American country, which will hold a general election in October, will begin a “post-confinement phase” on September 1.

It said “the closure of land, river and lake borders” and “the suspension of public events, cultural, sports, festive and political activities, and all types of meetings that generate a crowd” will be maintained. 

People and vehicles will be allowed to circulate for longer periods, between 5:00 am and 8:00 pm  — an extension of two hours from current rules — and a weekend prohibition on movement will be lifted on Saturdays. 

Anez told reporters Friday that the possibility of a resurgence of the virus remained as restrictions eased.

“People need to go out to work,” she said, adding that if people don’t suffer “because of the coronavirus, it will be because of corona-hunger”.

Experts believe the virus could reach its peak in Bolivia between September and November, including the period in which the country will hold a twice-delayed general election, on October 18.

Strict measures have been in place since March after the country registered its first coronavirus infections, though a more flexible regime has been in place since June. 

To date Bolivia has more than 113,000 infections with 4,800 deaths.

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