[WATCH] Coronavirus: Prime Minister announces restrictions on mass events

Prime Minister Robert Abela addresses the media after Cabinet meeting • Mass outdoor events with more than 2,000 people are banned and indoor events can only be held with a maximum 750 people • Schools to remain open

Robert Abela addressed the media after Cabinet decided on more measures to combat Covid-19. (Photo: James Bianchi/MediaToday)
Robert Abela addressed the media after Cabinet decided on more measures to combat Covid-19. (Photo: James Bianchi/MediaToday)

Robert Abela has announced new restrictions on mass events after Cabinet agreed to step up the fight against the coronavirus outbreak.

All mass events with more than 2,000 people have been banned and indoor events will be limited to a maximum gathering of 750 people.

The decisions come hours after Malta cut off all air and sea travel ties with Italy for passengers.

Malta registered its fifth Covid-19 case on Tuesday afternoon. The 16-year-old girl is the daughter of the man who tested positive on Monday night.

The widely popular St Patrick's party held in the streets of St Julian's next week has been stopped and a decision will be taken in the coming hours on the feast of St Joseph celebrated in Rabat, also next week.

Abela said action will be taken to repatriate Maltese nationals caught up in Italy. All those returning from Italy will be asked to self-quarantine for 14 days. Abela said the recommendation to self-quarantine has been extended to all those who visited any region of Italy over the past week.

The advice from the Public Health Superintendence was for schools to remain open, Abela said, adding all instructions from the education authorities on personal and workplace hygene should be followed.

The Prime Minister said decisions were based on the scientific advice given by the health authorities. He thanked Public Health Superintendent Charmaine Gauci and her team for their invaluable work.

Key measures in place

  • Mass outdoor events with 2,000 people or more have been stopped
  • Mass indoor events with more than 750 people have been stopped
  • St Patrick's day street parties next week cannot be held
  • Decision yet to be taken on Rabat's St Joseph feast next week
  • No mandatory quarantine yet but government will change policy depending on public health advice
  • All people returning from Italy, or who returned over the past week, have to self-quarantine
  • Drivers of merchant vehicles from Italy will be tested
  • Schools to remain open
  • Premier league football matches can go ahead with no restrictions
  • All measures are for an indefinite period