Dutch government expected to announce partial lockdown

The Dutch government is widely expected to announce a partial lockdown amid soaring COVID-19 cases that are putting the country’s health care sector under renewed strain

The move comes amid a surge in coronavirus infections across Europe in recent weeks.

The government has not formally commented on the reports. New measures are set to be unveiled by caretaker Prime Minister Mark Rutte at a nationally televised press conference at 7 p.m. (1800GMT).

Last week, the government reintroduced orders to wear face masks in stores and expanded use of the country’s COVID pass, which proves the holder has been fully vaccinated, has recovered from COVID-19 or has tested negative. Since then, cases have only increased.

The Netherlands, where nearly 85% of adults are fully vaccinated, largely ended lockdown restrictions at the end of September.

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Follow AP’s coverage of the coronavirus pandemic at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic.

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