Covid-19: Bulgarian who broke quarantine after returning from Sweden arrested

The Sofia District Prosecutor’s Office has placed in 72-hour-custody a person who returned to Bulgaria from Sweden via Frankfurt and who failed to comply with the mandatory 14-day quarantine ordered as a measure against the spread of Covid-19, the Prosecutor’s Office said on March 29.

Pre-trial proceedings were initiated after police found that the person was not at his permanent residential address.

The statement said that the person, on arriving at Sofia Airport, had refused to sign the quarantine forms given to him and had made a loud phone call mocking the efforts of the airport staff to fulfill their official duties.

This was one of a number of developments and statements related to the Covid-19 situation in Bulgaria.

The Foreign Ministry said that acting on the instructions of minister Ekaterina Zaharieva, special flights were being organised to enable Bulgarian citizens to come home from Spain and the United Arab Emirates.

Citizens must pay 300 euro to cover the cost of the flight, the Foreign Ministry said.

The director of the National Center for Infectious Diseases, Professor Todor Kantardzhiev, told Nova Televizia in a March 29 interview that the national operational headquarters was of the opinion that Covid-19 would peak in Bulgaria around the third week of April, during and after the time of the Eastern Orthodox Christian Easter.

Developments would depend on the measures and how the public complies with them, Kantardzhiev said. He said that people should leave their homes only to buy food and medicine.

“There are three basic things we need to do. The first is to prevent an ill doctor from infecting patients. Medical staff should be healthy. Masks and clothing should be used. Every patient entering the reception or emergency ward, as well as the ambulance, must think that he or she is potentially infected with coronavirus,” Kantardzhiev said.

Transport Minister Rossen Zhelyazkov, in a March 29 interview with public broadcaster Bulgarian National Television, said that land transport is operating normally, and maritime and rail are working as well. So delivery is guaranteed. There will be difficulties, and the sooner the pandemic peak passes, the better, Zhelyazkov said.

According to him, “green corridors” for transport should guarantee the delivery of all kinds of goods – priority is given to medicines and foodstuffs, but there should be no restriction on other goods and materials.

For Bulgaria the “green corridors” are Kalotina – Kapitan Andreevo, Vidin-Kulata, Rousse-Kulata and the roads connecting them.

Tourism Minister Nikolina Angelkova, interviewed by Nova Televizia, said that practically, there was no tourism at the moment.

“It has stopped. No airline is operating flights at full volume. But there is no other way in this situation, because it is health that is most important. That is the number one goal, to control the coronavirus pandemic,” Angelkova said.

She said that if this situation lasts more than two to three months, there will be bankruptcies among tour operators.

For the rest of The Sofia Globe’s continuing coverage of the Covid-19 situation in Bulgaria, please click here.

(Archive photo: Bulgaria’s Interior Ministry press centre)



The Sofia Globe staff

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