Mitsotakis: hard times can be overcome by being united and careful

ATHENS – The year that has just emerged has been difficult and full of challenges but also full of fruitful efforts, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said in his New Year’s message, including a “medical miracle”, the arrival coronavirus vaccines.

As the new Omicron variant sweeps the planet and challenges all countries alike, 80% of Greek adults have been vaccinated since the first vaccines arrived a year ago, he said.

The new year, 2022, and in particular “the coming weeks will bring ups and downs, but we have the opportunity to leave the storm behind us and lead our country to calmer waters,” the Prime Minister said, “as long as we remain united, mature and careful.

Although the Greek people feel tired and worried about the pandemic, and although they expect the New Year celebrations to be different, he stressed, “unfortunately we welcome New Years with some restrictions on entertainment, because that’s what the specialists have suggested we do. May the company of the people we love be the best substitute for the music we won’t hear these days.

Mitsotakis was referring to restrictions that include earlier closures of dining and entertainment venues and a ban on music at the same time, imposed on Thursday after the infections super-spread this week, to deter crowd gatherings. The restrictions, he said in his post, are appropriate to the circumstances and are “intended to protect market activity, social behavior and the resilience of healthcare facilities.”

In 2021 the economy and society survived and the state promoted a system of massive financial support “which has enabled us, during this economic storm, to protect incomes, increase our gross national product and achieve the greater reduction in unemployment in Europe ”. In addition, he said, the country faces national challenges related to national defense while trying to secure its role in the region through strategic agreements.

“It is evident that in successive battles against the virus there have been missteps and Greece’s prosperity needs time to reach the average wallet, much more when the global energy crisis is knocking on our door as well.” Mitsotakis said. But he expressed confidence that things would improve and asserted that “the government and I will be here, standing next to every Greek, correcting our mistakes, listening to your voices and providing solutions if necessary”.

The past year has reminded the world how vulnerable people are to large-scale events like the pandemic and the climate crisis, and highlighted the role of transnational coordination and the challenges of traps along the way. “We need to bring to the fore the ancient ridge of the Greeks: our power to turn problems into opportunities and obstacles into helps – this might be the most appropriate way to honor the 200th anniversary of freedom that we have celebrated this past. year, “said the Prime Minister, referring to Greece’s bicentenary since the War of Independence.

The government “will continue on the path of progress, by protecting public health with flexible policies before Omicron” and by keeping the health advice: get vaccinated, especially with the booster, do several and frequent rapid tests, and observe the protections of base, with primary among them, the proper use of face masks, the Prime Minister said, wishing everyone a Happy New Year.

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