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Covid-19 in UAE: The Restrictions to Know Ahead of the Festive Season

Abu Dhabi skyline from the Breakwater. Photo: Getty

With UAE National Day fast approaching, along with upcoming Christmas and New Year festivities, the UAE’s National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority has called on residents to strictly adhere to Covid-19 safety measures.

Guidelines have been set out with regards to holiday celebrations, where residents have been encouraged to celebrate the holiday season remotely, ensuring the safety of the public is at the highest priority. Restrictions include a limit on gatherings for firework displays, the prohibition of exchanging food and gifts, the cancellation of workplace parties, and the requirement for approval for the hosting of music and other live events.

Strict hygiene protocols will also be enforced in public areas, with thermal imagine cameras placed at entrances and exits of many facilities, as well as the reinforcement of two-meter social distancing rules and the wearing of face masks. The safety measures have been put in place by the government in order to limit infection rates.

“With the UAE National Day, Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve celebrations approaching, we stress the importance of adhering to precautionary and preventive health and safety measures during all activities to tackle Covid-19,” Dr Saif Al Dhaheri, spokesman of the National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority said during the weekly media briefing. “Concerts can be held only after receiving approval from authorities and only with the application of all precautionary measures. Also, workplace celebrations are canceled and restricted to the hanging of decorations, flags, and banners only, while gatherings to watch shows such as fireworks are not permitted,” he added.

Dr Al Dhaheri also underlined the importance of all residents adhering to both, the newer and the existing safety measures. “The official rules stress the need for everyone to follow existing safety measures, not to hold gatherings or marches, prohibit the circulation, distribution/exchange of celebratory gifts and food and call for the appointment of a person to monitor and enforce all health and safety measures,” he said.

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