The Bosnian region makes it easier to block senior citizens and reopens some companies

SARAJEVO (Reuters) – Bosnia’s autonomous Serbian republic released Monday the restrictions imposed to curb the spread of the new corona virus, allowing seniors to leave home three hours a day and some businesses to reopen.

Bosnia declared a nationwide state of emergency on March 17 after the Serbian Republic and the Bosniak-Croat Federation, their other autonomous half, declared emergencies separately and introduced measures to limit the transmission of the virus.

“The state of emergency will continue until at least May 11,” said Serbian Prime Minister Radovan Viskovic.

He said social distance and other safeguards still needed attention.

The Federation loosened restrictions on April 24 to stop the spread of the virus by preventing seniors and children from ever leaving their homes after the Supreme Court ruled that the restrictions violated the constitution.

The region’s civil protection agency also lifted a nighttime curfew and lifted mandatory quarantine, but said people still had to isolate themselves in their homes for 14 days.

Bosnia has officially registered 1,565 cases and 60 deaths from COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus. Epidemiologists in both regions said the rate of recovery had been faster in the past few days than that of new infections.

Even before the pandemic, Bosnia’s health system was in bad shape. A large number of doctors and nurses have been looking for work in Western Europe, leading to concerns that the country may soon have too few medical personnel to cope with.

Related Slideshow: Outbreak of Corona Virus (COVID-19) Around the World (provided by Photo Services)

(Reporting by Maja Zuvela; editing by Alex Richardson)

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