Egypt shortens curfew hours during Ramadan

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A security guard at Cairo University wears a protective mask following the suspension of study for only undergraduate students amid coronavirus disease (COVID-19) spread, in Cairo, Egypt March 15, 2020. REUTERS/Shokry Hussien
A security guard at Cairo University wears a protective mask following the suspension of study for only undergraduate students amid coronavirus disease (COVID-19) spread, in Cairo, Egypt March 15, 2020. REUTERS/Shokry Hussien

Egypt on Thursday announced a change in its curfew time making it from 9pm to 6am during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan in an attempt to reduce congestion in the time before the curfew begins.

In late March, the Egyptian government imposed a two-week curfew, which initially began at 7pm but was later moved to 8pm. The government subsequently extended the curfew period on April 8. Citizens were to stay indoors but were allowed to leave their homes for food and essential needs.

Egyptian Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly, who spoke during a televised speech, also announced additional measures to contain the spread of the coronavirus to be effected during this period.

Madbouly said that commercial centres and shops are permitted to remain open throughout the week until 5pm. However, food businesses should only offer home deliveries and takeaway services until 7pm. Also, sports and public clubs and gyms across the country are to remain closed.

Additionally, people have been prohibited from traveling across the country and road travel between 7pm and 6am is also prohibited, both for a period of two weeks. All schools and private lessons in which students gather was also suspended for two weeks.

However, hospitals and medical centres and post offices, which distribute salaries and pensions, will remain operational but services offered by ministries and governorates remain suspended.

Anyone found contravening the regulations faces imprisonment or a fine not exceeding 4,000 Egyptian Pounds (about $253).

As of April 23, Egypt has recorded 3,659 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 276 deaths, according to the World Health Organisation (W.H.O.).

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