WHO urges Europeans to wear masks during Christmas

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  • 2020-12-17
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The World Health Organization in Europe urged families to wear face masks during this year’s Christmas family gatherings, as it warned of a “further resurgence” of COVID-19 in early 2021.

The UN agency said people should not underestimate “the importance of your decisions” and encouraged extra precaution for holiday gatherings, even within the family. If possible, the WHO said celebrations should be held outdoors and “participants should wear masks and maintain physical distancing.”

The EU’s 27 member countries aim to start COVID-19 vaccinations on “the same day” in a sign of unity, European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen said.

Her statement to the European Parliament came as pressure mounted on the bloc to catch up with the United States and United Kingdom, which have already started inoculating people with a vaccine made by Pfizer and BioNTech.

“To get to the end of the pandemic, we will need up to 70 percent of the population vaccinated. This is a huge task, a big task. So let’s start as soon as possible with the vaccination together, as 27, with a start at the same day,” von der Leyen told MEPs.