Governance and SocietyHealth

Several major public events cancelled on account of Covid

Prime Minister Bárður á Steig Nielsen. Image credits: Sverri Egholm.

Citing a growing number of recent cases of persons testing positive for Covid-19 in the Faroe Islands, a number of festivals and cultural events have been either postponed or cancelled.

With cases of the British Covid variant B.1.1.7 spreading since May, however with no reports of related hospitalizations, health authorities call for the reenforcement of restrictions.

Earlier this week, the Country & Blues Festival in Sørvágur was cancelled, and on June 3rd it was announced that the popular Tórshavn Culture Night (Mentanarnátt), scheduled to have taken place on Friday June 4th, had to be postponed until after the summer holidays.

Visit Tórshavn hopes that itll be possible to host the Culture Night after the summer holidays when more of us have been vaccinated,” the local tourism agency stated. “Of course were sorry about this decision, and we hope the event can still be as successful after the summer holidays.”

Another postponed event, due to take place this weekend, was Norðoyastevna, the annual festival in Klaksvík. It was to feature the summer’s first boat race.

And this year’s Atlantic Airways Tórshavn Marathon, slated to kick off Sunday tomorrow, has also been postponed, with no new date announced as yet; however participants will receive further information via e-mail, the organizers promise.

All major sporting events this weekend will also be held without spectators, according to media reports.

The Faroe Islands currently has a total of 49 active Covid cases, most of which are domestic cases. The country has so far had a total 741 cases, whereof 691 have been declared recovered, and one fatality (however the person in question was hospitalized with a serious illness unrelated to Covid prior to contracting the virus, according to the health authorities). As of Saturday, over 230 people remain in quarantine.

Due to the recent spike in new cases of infection, the government advises that people exercise caution for the next seven days and cancel or postpone all large gatherings, public or private. 

The government also advises that night life be put on hold this weekend and as a result of this, all bars and nightclubs closed around midnight last night instead of at the usual closing time at 4 AM. Besides, the government cautions people to practice social distancing and personal hygiene.

Currently, more than 40 percent of the Faroese population has received the first jab of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, with almost 25 pc. of the population fully vaccinated. As of this week, anyone over the age of 16 can be vaccinated in the Faroe Islands.

Official guidelines on Covid can be found here.

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