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Greece to reopen high schools but stay in lockdown

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Youths stand in a queue as they wait to enter a clothes shop on Ermou Street, Athens' main shopping area, Friday, Jan. 22, 2021. Greece's government has extended nationwide lockdown measures indefinitely but retail stores and malls reopened Monday with strict entrance limits. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)

ATHENS – Authorities in Greece say high schools will reopen on Feb. 1 for the first time since mid-November, but that nationwide lockdown measures will remain in effect.

Education Minister Niki Kerameus on Friday said high schools would follow the reopening of primary schools on Jan. 11 and a limited opening of retail stores a week later.

But restrictions on movement will remain in effect, including a national nightly curfew, a ban on domestic travel and a mandatory seven-day quarantine for all passengers arriving from abroad at Greek airports through Feb. 8. Remote classes will also continue for university students.

Greece has seen a steep decline in pandemic-related deaths in recent weeks, but authorities say tough restrictions will remain in place through the winter.

The weekly rolling average number of deaths is currently at 0.25 per 100,000 residents in Greece, from a high of 0.94 in early December.