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Norway lifts covid-19 mandates as cases drop

by The New York Times | September 26, 2021 at 5:01 a.m.

Norway on Saturday lifted social-distancing rules, capacity limits on businesses and other pandemic-era restrictions that have been in place for more than a year.

"It is 561 days since we introduced the toughest measures in Norway in peacetime," Prime Minister Erna Solberg said in announcing the moves at a news conference Friday. "Now the time has come to return to a normal daily life."

In Norway, new daily cases have dropped by 50% over the past two weeks. Sixty-seven percent of the population is fully vaccinated and another 10% has had a first dose, according to the Our World in Data project at the University of Oxford.

The changes also allow full capacity at sports, culture venues and restaurants, and the reopening of nightclubs. The government also announced Friday that it would withdraw at the end of the month its global advisory against nonessential travel abroad.

"We will now go back to assessing countries on an individual basis to determine the need for travel advice," Ine Eriksen Soreide, the minister of foreign affairs, said in a statement Friday.

"These assessments will incorporate issues relating to the pandemic, the health situation and the security situation in the country in question."

Entry restrictions will remain in place for some countries, which the government said would be specified before next Friday.

Norway is the latest country in Europe to roll back pandemic-era restrictions. In Sweden, the government confirmed this week that it would proceed with the last stage of its reopening plan for the fully vaccinated, which represents 63% of its population.

Print Headline: Norway lifts covid-19 mandates as cases drop

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