Polish prime minister says Poland will remove most COVID curbs

Poland’s Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki speaks with the media as he arrives for the EU-Africa summit at the European Council building in Brussels, Belgium February 17, 2022. Geert Vanden Wijngaert/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo

WARSAW, Feb 23 (Reuters) - Poland will remove most COVID-19 restrictions from March 1, while keeping the obligation to wear face masks in enclosed public spaces, Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said on Wednesday.

"After medical consultations and watching what's happening in other countries we can introduce far-reaching changes in our restrictions policy. We can remove restrictions that have been with us for many months," Morawiecki told reporters.

While face masks will remain compulsory in public spaces including shops and transportation, limits on the number of people visiting stores, restaurants and cultural venues will be removed.

Clubs and discotheques will be allowed to reopen, and public institutions will cease to work remotely, the government said.

"More and more countries are removing restrictions, while encouraging people to vaccinate. We are removing most restrictions today, while leaving in place the most needed ones," Morawiecki said. Poland registered 20,456 new infections on Wednesday and 360 COVID-related deaths.

Over 110,000 infected people have died since the start of the pandemic, according to health ministry data. Nearly 66% of the adult population has been fully vaccinated, one of the lowest vaccination rates among European Union countries.

Reporting Anna Wlodarczak-Semczuk, Pawel Florkiewicz and Marek Strzelecki; Editing by Alex Richardson

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