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Covid has not gone away, nor has its ability to cause deep splits across EU

John Downing


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Protests against the Belgian government's pandemic restrictions in Brussels last month. Photo: Reuters/Johanna Geron

Protests against the Belgian government's pandemic restrictions in Brussels last month. Photo: Reuters/Johanna Geron

Protests against the Belgian government's pandemic restrictions in Brussels last month. Photo: Reuters/Johanna Geron

Deciding that Covid-19 is a thing of the past brings its comforts. Many of us have already taken strongly to the maxim. But Ireland right now is just a bit ahead of the curve compared with other EU states as authorities taper their virus responses according to local conditions.

On Tuesday, the Austrian government will begin its mandatory vaccination regime. From mid-March, fines of up to €3,600 for those who fail to get their first vaccination will concentrate unjabbed citizens’ minds. Meanwhile, the jabbed citizens are invited to join a lottery to win vouchers worth €500, usable in shops, hotels and leisure centres.


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