The Norwegian Prime Minister has admitted that she made the decision to close schools because of the “fear” coronavirus pandemic.
The country’s leader, Erna Solberg, contacted Norwegian television on Wednesday to admit that she had panicked at the imposition of the stringent lockdown measures, but made the decision as a “precaution.”
During an interview with state broadcaster NRK, the politician said: “Should schools be closed? Maybe not. But at the same time, I think it was the right thing at the time. Based on the information we had, we took a precautionary strategy. ‘
Ms Solberg, who announced plans to fully lift the coronavirus blockage in Norway by mid-June, further said that she and the Health Directorate would override the advice from the Norwegian Institute of Health, which had suggested schools remain open .
Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg went to Norwegian television on Wednesday to admit that she had made the decision to close schools ‘out of fear’
Preparations are underway to reopen Vallhall Sports Arena in Oslo, Norway as a school exam room amid the pandemic
She added, “I probably made a lot of decisions out of fear. At worst, the scenarios became mastery and we kept thinking; “how can we be a leader? ”
“These scenarios mean that you could say ‘we might be hit harder than we thought’, but we shouldn’t hold back even if we’re not sure it’s going to get that bad.” ‘
On March 12, the same day the country first died of Covid-19, the Directorate of Health announced that it would shut down all kindergartens, elementary schools, high schools, colleges and colleges in an effort to control the spread of the virus to keep.
As the number of cases increased, the government also asked anyone who arrived in Norway from February 27 to introduce mandatory quarantine in their homes and group gatherings, including cultural and sporting events, was banned.
The country has reported 8,437 Covid-19 cases and 236 deaths to date.
236 The prime minister’s comments come a few weeks after Camilla Stoltenberg, the director general of the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH) said the country could have achieved the same effects by ‘not blocking’.
She told state broadcaster NRK: “Our assessment now … is that we might have been able to achieve the same effects and prevent some of the unfortunate effects by not locking, but by keeping open but infection control measures.”
Earlier this month, Norway announced plans to fully lift the coronavirus blockage in mid-June.
Ms Solberg celebrates Constitution Day on May 17 with the fanfare of the Uranienborg School
The Norwegian prime minister speaks during the government’s press conference about easing lockdown measures
Prime Minister Erna Solberg announced that private meetings of 20 people will be allowed provided social distance can be maintained while public meetings of up to 50 people will be allowed.
Workplaces are also reopened with strict social distance, sports halls are reopened and sports with fewer than 20 people can be resumed.
Schools and colleges across the country reopened on May 11, provided the infection rate remains low, while bars and amusement parks follow on June 1.
The final restrictions will then be lifted on June 15, with meetings of up to 200 people, gyms and fitness centers reopened and the football league restarted.
Ms Solberg said earlier: “You have shown us patience, now it is our turn to give something back. That is why we present a plan to reopen Norway, a plan to take back everyday life. ‘
The country was one of the first European countries to shut down completely on March 12 and plans to lift nearly all restrictions by June 15 after successfully flattening the infection curve, with 8,437 cases confirmed and 236 deaths, data from Johns Hopkins University. .
People walk along a street in Drottninggatan, Stockholm, on May 29, 2020, amid the coronavirus pandemic
In comparison, neighboring Sweden – which shunned a complete shutdown in favor of more relaxed social distance measures – has tripled the number of cases, with 37, 113 confirmed cases and 4,395 deaths.
Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen announced on Friday that Denmark will reopen its borders for residents of Germany, Norway and Iceland from 15 June, but “with restrictions”, while Norway said it would do so for Danish visitors.
Norwegian, German and Icelandic tourists entering Denmark will have to prove that they have booked a minimum of six nights in the country and cannot spend the night in Copenhagen.
But both Norway and Denmark said they are not opening up to Swedish visitors due to the high rate of coronavirus infections.