PM Madbouly chairs Cabinet meeting (Photo courtesy of Egyptian Cabinet page on Facebook)
Egypt’s Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly ordered on Wednesday the stricter enforcement of the regulation making face masks obligatory in public spaces and transportation modes.
Violators face fines of EGP 4,000 if they don't adhere to the regulation.
Madbouly's order came in tandem with the surge in coronavirus cases in Egypt.
In a cabinet meeting on Wednesday, Madbouly urged the continued adherence to preventive measures against the pandemic, mainly wearing face masks in public places and transport modes.
Egypt made face masks mandatory on 30 May, with violators facing hefty fines, in a move aimed at curbing the spread of the virus in the populous country.
According to the prime minister's decree in May, face masks are mandatory for workers or visitors at markets, shops, banks, as well as governmental and private institutions until further notice.
Wednesday’s statements come as reports indicate a rise in coronavirus cases nationwide, as the general public have been showing a relaxed enforcement of the preventive measures since a drop in coronavirus cases has been recorded in the past months.
Egypt has registered 105,705 coronavirus cases, including 6,142 deaths since the outbreak in mid-February.
In June, Egypt abolished a nighttime curfew imposed since March to curb the spread of the virus, allowing restaurants, coffee shops, and other businesses to operate at a reduced occupancy, reopening mosques and churches to worshipers and resuming regular international flights as part of a plan to coexist with the virus.
The government said preventive measures would be reviewed periodically before it decided to gradually relax them further, warning that "strict measures" would be imposed if citizens failed to adhere to the rules.
Egypt has urged caution in anticipation of any spike leading to a second wave, especially with the resurgence in cases of the coronavirus in many European countries, particularly with the advent of autumn.
However, Egypt said it will not reinstate a full or partial lockdown if coronavirus infections surge once more.