The President’s Cabinet has approved the introduction of Coronapass and a set of other measures and modifications to current rules, as the Republic of Cyprus prepares to end its third pandemic lockdown after Sunday but not without legal questions.
During a meeting at the Presidential Palace on Wednesday evening, the Cabinet approved post-lockdown measures effective Monday 10 May through May 31. Health Minister Constantinos Ioannou said he would present measures and clarify details on Thursday.
According to the new measures, a Coronapass will be required for those who wish to gain access to eating establishments, churches, gyms, as well as shopping malls and large-scale department stores.
People thought to be immune to COVID-19 will be eligible to obtain a Coronapass by either having a negative PCR or antigen rapid test within the last 72 hours, having been vaccinated with at least one dose at least three weeks prior, or having fallen ill from a coronavirus infection in the last six months.
SMS text notifications will no longer be required in the post-lockdown period in May.
But a late night curfew will continue daily from 11pm until 5am the following morning. The curfew does not apply to people going to work, while other exceptions include traveling for an emergency to a medical facility, the vet, or an overnight pharmacy.
Other measures include school openings on Monday with high school students required to submit a negative PCR test valid for 72 hours.
Restaurants are also allowed to host guests in outdoor areas provided that customers will have a Coronapass, with officials clarifying only police will have the power to confirm immunity. Indoor spaces will open June 1.
Ioannou is expected to make an official announcement on Thursday around noon, while more details about all measures, including church gatherings and shopping trips, will be published in an updated story.
Legal questions over coronapass
The Cyprus Bar Association has also weighed in on the discussion, raising serious questions over the Coronapass immunity requirement. CBA president Christos Clerides told state radio Thursday morning that some of the measures could appear to violate constitutional rights, adding that the members of the network’s leadership committee will wait to hear about specifics later in the day.
Other lawyers and business leaders on the island have also raised questions as to whether vaccinated people could still transmit the coronavirus, calling the Coronapass requirement as “too strict” and “possibly unconstitutional,” with health officials maintaining the position that everyone will have to adhere to health protocols and guidelines, both the vaccinated and unvaccinated.