Egypt's cabinet spokesman Nader Saad has urged all Egyptians to celebrate the Sham El-Nessim holiday in their homes on Monday, after the government announced that the country’s curfew will be extended for another two weeks.
Egypt extended on Wednesday a nationwide night-time curfew by two weeks as the country’s coronavirus infection tally continues to rise.
The curfew, first imposed on 25 March, will remain in effect until 23 April and will now begin at 8 pm instead of the previous 7 pm.
All beaches and public parks nationwide will be closed completely until 23 April, Saad said in statements on TV late on Wednesday, adding "this decision has been taken in anticipation of the [festive] gatherings that could take place on this day as people might forget the precautions amid their celebrations."
Egyptians usually go on picnics at public gardens from dawn to dusk on Sham El-Nessim, where they eat colored eggs and green onions as well as different kinds of fish like fesikh, sardines and salted herring.
Given that Sham El-Nessim is an official holiday, all the lockdown rules that are in effect during the weekend will apply on Monday, the cabinet spokesman said. All shops and malls will be closed with the exception of supermarkets, pharmacies and bakeries.
He called on people to order food items, medicines and other needs online to minimise going out.
Delivery services by restaurants and shops would now be available throughout the day, as opppsed to only until 7 pm over the past two weeks.
The fast-spreading virus has so far infected 1,560 people in Egypt and killed 103.