İrem UZUN -TDO- Lebanon's cabinet has announced a four-day nationwide lockdown from Thursday after COVID-19 cases rise in the country. Prime Minister Hassan Diab said the rise threatens the country's so-far successful response to the pandemic. He accused accusing some people of "negligence and lack of responsibility" for ignoring government guidelines on social distancing. There are 870 confirmed cases in Lebanon, however more than 100 of those were registered in the past four days.
The country has been under lockdown since March. It started lifting restrictions last week as part of a longer-term plan, letting restaurants, hair salons, construction sites and others re-open at lower capacity. However, the cabinet agreed on Tuesday on the “full closure” for four days to curb a rise in new infections in recent days, after a drop in cases which the government had hailed as a success. Information Minister Manal Abdel Samad said the four-day closure, which excludes supermarkets and pharmacies, would also allow teams from the health ministry to conduct more testing. She called people to stay home and avoid going out except for urgent cases.