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COVID: Denmark closes theatres and museums as Omicron cases surge

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By Euronews  with AFP
Denmark's Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen speaks during a press conference in Copenhagen, 17 December 2021.
Denmark's Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen speaks during a press conference in Copenhagen, 17 December 2021.   -   Copyright  Olafur Steinar Gestsson/Ritzau Scanpix via AP   -  

Denmark announced on Friday that it would close cinemas, theatres, museums and other public venues in an attempt to curb record-high COVID-19 cases driven by the highly transmissible new Omicron variant.

The Scandinavian country has recorded an all-time high of more than 11,000 cases in the past 24 hours, including a new high of more than 2,500 Omicron cases, the government said at a press conference.

"Theatres, cinemas, (and) concert halls are going to have to close," Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen told a press conference. "We need to limit our activity. We all need to limit our social contact," she said.

The measures announced on Friday have yet to be approved by parliament.

"Our goal remains to keep society as open as possible," said Frederiksen, excluding lockdowns like the one decided in spring 2020 "because we have vaccines".

The country will also close other public spaces such as convention centres and amusement parks.

Bars and restaurants will close at 11:00 pm, with a ban on serving alcohol after 10:00 pm.

The Omicron variant appears to be more transmissible than the Delta variant but it remains unknown if the infections are more severe.