Restrictions eased in Azerbaijan

Vusal Nabiyev

Restrictions on coronavirus eased in Azerbaijan. The decision was announced at a briefing of the Government Operational Headquarters. It was noted that these changes happened because of the improvement of the epidemiological situation in Azerbaijan.

This was due to a decrease in the number of people infected with the coronavirus and an increase in the number of people vaccinated in the country. On April 10, the number of 2,500 days of infection dropped to 300 in the last 10 days of May.

At the same time, the number of people vaccinated in Azerbaijan is growing. To date, the number of vaccine doses has reached 2.4 million. The number of people vaccinated in the first stage is 1,552,774, and the number of people vaccinated in the second stage is 914,320.

The decision that people are happiest about is the lifting of the ban on wearing outdoor masks. From May 31, it was no mandatory to wear a mask in the open spaces. From the same day, the Baku metro was resume work. Transportation between the regions of Azerbaijan was also resumed from May 31.

From 06:00 on May 31, 2021:

- the requirement to use personal protective equipment (medical mask, cloth mask, respirator, etc.) in public places in the open air is abolished;

- Passenger transportation activity is restored in Baku Metro;

- Passenger transportation by land and air from cities and regions of the country is restored.

From 00:00 on June 10, 2021, the following areas of work and services will be reinstated:

- places of religious worship (not more than 50% of the places of worship at the same time (not more than 50 people in total));

- large shopping centers (except for the activities of children's and other entertainment centers, cinemas);

- sports and health-rehabilitation facilities (without the requirement to use personal respiratory protection), taking into account paragraph 2.3 of this Decision;

- beaches and swimming pools, water attractions, and sports venues located in their territory.

Except for persons under the age of 18, only persons with a COVID-19 passport (Certificate of vaccination against COVID-19) or COVID-19 immunity certificate may use sports and health-improving facilities.

Medical masks are obligated in closed markets, indoor catering, trade, and service facilities.

The requirement to wear a medical mask has been abolished in public transport stops, in front of ticket offices, ATMs and payment terminals, trade, business, and service facilities, in public places where people gather and are in close contact, and in other cases where social distance is not possible.

However, doctor Emil Gasimov says lifting the mask ban will increase the risk of infection.

"If the rules for distance in the open air are not followed (keeping distance, not shaking hands, not hugging), the number of infections may increase. After the decision to wear a mask in the open air, we may have had a comfortable summer, but from autumn - September-October, the number of re-infections may increase," he said.

But despite all this, people are satisfied with the decisions made. The decision to hold a single network was met with dissatisfaction.

Thus, although the wedding was allowed by the decision of the Operational Headquarters under the Minister and the Cabinet, only those who have a COVID-19 passport will be able to attend the wedding.