March 8, 2020 / 2:24 PM / a month ago

Greece shuts sports events to spectators as coronavirus cases rise

ATHENS (Reuters) - Greece on Sunday announced a two-week ban on sporting events with spectators and on school field trips, as its number of coronavirus cases rose by seven to 73.

Conference events and the operation of recreational centers for pensioners will be suspended for four weeks, the Health Ministry said in a statement.

The measures will be under continuous review, and any decision to close schools temporarily will be taken on a case-by-case basis, it added.

Greece reported its first coronavirus case on Feb. 26, a woman who had recently returned from northern Italy. Many of the individuals who have caught the virus were pilgrims who had been on a tour of religious sites in Egypt and Israel in late February.

A number of other countries including Italy and Bulgaria have ordered all to be played in empty stadiums for a period of time, and grand prix organizers said on Sunday that this month’s Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix would go ahead with no fans in attendance.

Reporting By Michele Kambas; Editing by Kevin Liffey

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