STA, 26 February 2021 - As gatherings are banned in the coastal Obalno-Kraška region as of Saturday and travel between this and other regions is restricted to work- and health-related reasons, Interior Minister Aleš Hojs explained that schools will not be closed in the region for the time being. There will also be no ban on travel between municipalities there.
Hojs told the press on Friday that the restrictions were being introduced due to the deteriorating epidemiological situation in the region, but travel would not be restricted to municipal borders.
"As the epidemiological situation in the municipalities of the Obalno-Kraška region is mostly comparable and because only one statistical region has entered the red [tier], we decided to confine movement within the region only," he said.
Several exceptions for the crossing of the regional border will be allowed, but these do not include visits to shops that are not available in the region.
"We know that a part of shops in the region have been closed and this is the exception that people could take advantage of, by saying that they allegedly need to travel to Ljubljana or elsewhere for that reason," the minister stressed.
Travel between the permanent and temporary residence will not be considered as an exception, either. "If you have a permanent residence in Ljubljana, you are in Ljubljana. This ... must not be exploited for going on a vacation or on a trip to the coast."
As for schools, Hojs said that they would remain open in the Obalno-Kraška region, meaning that primary school children and students of the final grade of secondary school would continue to be taught in-person on Monday.
"A decision has been made that school workers, epidemiologists and doctors come up by next Wednesday with a model under which in-person teaching could perhaps be continued, and even all secondary school students return to school, in the red regions."
Elsewhere in the country, gatherings remain restricted to up to ten persons and the 9pm-6am curfew remains in force. Hojs believes that the latter has had a positive impact on the epidemiological situation in Slovenia.
"From the position I hold at the moment, I may assess that the measure has contributed much to the situation starting to improve," he said, assessing that otherwise, the picture would have been much different, mostly because of private parties.
The government is currently taking decisions on restrictions on the regional basis, but if a majority of the regions return to the red tier, it will probably resort again to taking measures at the national level, Hojs added.