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The head of Austria’s government warned citizens that if unvaccinated people don’t soon get the vaccine and COVID-19 cases continue to rise, Austria will lock down the unvaccinated.
During a visit Thursday to Bregenz in western Austria, Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg elaborated, saying that a lockdown for the unvaccinated is “probably unavoidable.” Schallenberg also said the unvaccinated face an “uncomfortable” winter and Christmas.
“I don’t see why two-thirds should lose their freedom because one-third is dithering,” Schallenberg said. “For me, it is clear that there should be no lockdown for the vaccinated out of solidarity for the unvaccinated.
“According to the incremental plan, we actually have just days until we have to introduce the lockdown for unvaccinated people,” he adds.
Schallenberg called the country’s vaccination rate “shamefully low.” About 65% of the population is fully inoculated, according to the Seattle Times.
On Thursday, official figures showed 760.6 reported new cases per 100,000 residents over the past seven days, three times that of neighboring Germany. Upper Austria, the country’s worst-affected region, had nearly 1,200 new cases per 100,000 residents over the past week.
Governor Thomas Stelzer says officials are planning the lockdown for “Monday, provided that there is a legal green light from the federal government, or rather that the federal government creates the legal basis.”
So “soon” may have been an understatement for the insubordinate Austrians.