Museums, malls re-open in Poland

Museums, art galleries, libraries and shopping malls re-opened in Poland on Monday as the country eased some of its coronavirus restrictions.

But Health Minister Adam Niedzielski said most schools would remain shut until at least March.

“Several countries that took decisions over Christmas that were less conservative than ours are suffering very bad consequences,” he told RMF radio.

Bars, restaurants, hotels, nightclubs and gyms will also stay closed until February 14 at the earliest.

“What was possible to ease in the current situation is being eased. Let’s hold on a little longer to avoid a third wave,” health ministry spokesman Wojciech Andrusiewicz told reporters last week.

Infections and deaths have been falling in Poland in recent days. On Monday, the health ministry reported 2,503 new infections and 42 coronavirus-related deaths over the past 24 hours.

Some restaurants and nightclubs have defied the ban and re-opened but face hefty fines and police raids.

Over the weekend, 150 officers were deployed to shut down a nightclub in Rybnik in southern Poland, with police using stun grenades and tear gas.