Religious places of worship open to faithful under specific rules

13 May 2020
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The Joint Ministerial Decision (JMD) of the Ministers of Education and Religions Affairs and Health, which is expected to be announced today, will allow the holding of religious services or religious ceremonies (including weddings and baptisms) with the participation of believers in all places of worship of all religious communities.

The maximum number of people to be allowed in the places of worship will be determined by the ratio of one person per 10 sq.m. (eg in a place of worship of 300 sq.m. the maximum allowed number of people is 30) and they must maintain a distance of 1.5 meters between them.

For the places of worship that are over 500 sq.m. the maximum number is 50 people. The public health protection measures to be observed are detailed in the JMD (eg recommendation for the use of a mask, mandatory use of antiseptic for hand hygiene, frequent cleaning of surfaces, etc.).

Additional public health recommendations and measures have been incorporated to meet specific needs and characteristics of individual religious communities (eg how to enter places of worship that are not allowed to be entered by shoes, etc.).

It is also clarified that in the case of services or religious ceremonies in open spaces, the general rules on public outdoor gatherings apply. The validity of the JMD is from May 17 to June 5.

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