Kyriakos Mitsotakis made a televised address to Greek citizens on Tuesday on the spread of the coronavirus, echoing French President Emmanuel Macron, declaring that “we are at war.”
“The enemy is invisible but not invincible,” he said. “If we curb the spread of the virus, we give time to the health system to address urgent cases,” he added, noting that, “our first priority is to save lives.”
He announced that the capital’s NIMTS hospital will be turned into a centre for the treatment of coronavirus patients. With the help of private clinics, 1,900 additional hospital beds will also be made available for patients afflicted with the virus.
“Our first concern are people and public health,” he said. “That is way we imposed, earlier than other European countries, unprecedented measures for peacetime.” He said the state has three key goals: curbing the spread of the virus, boosting the health system and supporting the economy and workers.
The government will provide 2.5 billion euros to tackle the problems to the economy and labor market caused by the repercussions of the virus, the premier said. He appealed to employers not to dismiss workers as the government is planning measures that will boost liquidity and will allow them to endure the crisis.
“What was once cocooning is now necessary,” Mitsotakis said, underlining the need for people to stay at home to avert the spread of the virus, particularly to vulnerable social groups. “Our primary concern is to protect the elderly.”
Plea to business
The prime minister stressed, “We want to save jobs. And I urge businesses not to make redundancies. Because there will be measures that will stimulate liquidity and allow them to withstand this adversity.”
Mitsotakis warned that “the risk will increase in the coming two months” and said “new restrictions will follow,” stressing discipline and change in daily attitude to listen to the experts.
Schools facing new circumstances
Speaking of the closure of schools and universities and remote working, the PM stressed that “what we are experiencing is not ’15 days of relaxed holidays’” but something more akin to war conditions.
Mitsotakis added that this attitude requires “many and drastic measures,” and relies on the discipline of each citizen to limit the pandemic, and therefore the number of casualties.
Concluding his address to the nation, Mitsotakis urged people to stay safe — by staying at home.
”We will make it. We, the Greeks, will emerge once again victorious!” he declared.
Sourced by: Keep Talking Greece