Ukrainian Health Minister Maksym Stepanov says a tough quarantine rather than a lockdown was introduced in Ukraine as of January 8.

A lockdown mode foresees a complete halt to all processes across the country, he said at a briefing on January 9, according to an UNIAN correspondent.

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"The first day is over after the introduction of enhanced quarantine restrictions in Ukraine. I'd like to note that this is not a lockdown, as it is now called, this is a strict quarantine. Lockdown has certain signs, it is almost a complete suspension of all businesses, all processes in the country," he said.

He noted that European countries are now closing massively for lockdown, and there are strict restrictions that do not even allow you to leave the house without an appointment.

"However, only in Ukraine, quarantine restrictions are perceived by some so-called experts, politicians, some groups of the population as a quest called 'avoiding the bans.' No other European country has ever had such commitments from the side of the authorities and at the same time such disregard and disrespect for the established restrictions. And in no other country, discussions about the expediency of the authorities' actions during the pandemic were so active," he said.

He noted that these quarantine restrictions "were not invented by the president, prime minister or health minister just because we wanted so." According to him, these norms were developed taking into account the opinion of leading Ukrainian epidemiologists and infectious disease specialists, as well as relying on international experience.

"When we introduce certain curbs, we take into account the so-called laws of epidemiology, which cannot be bypassed with all the desire. It all develops according to certain principles along the trajectory of the epidemic in the country and to counteract the epidemic. And it is from the epidemiological point of view that we introduce quarantine restrictions," he said.

Coronavirus in Ukraine: Latest developments

  • Ukraine saw a drop in the number of daily COVID-19 cases, as 4,846 new coronavirus patients were confirmed in the past 24 hours as of January 9, 2021.
  • In particular, 2,411 new patients were hospitalized; while 7,961 people recovered. The death toll in the past 24 hours was 80 victims.