After last Wednesday’s meeting of the national security council the Brussels Region decided to abandon the mandatory wearing of face coverings in the street across the Belgian and Flemish capital. Starting 1 October face coverings will be obligatory for people waiting at the school gate and local authorities (the municipalities) will be able to decide in which areas they must still be worn. In Brussels everybody is obliged to have a face covering in their possession when they are out of the house and to wear it in ‘busy places’.
Bars, restaurants, shopping centres and night shops will have to close at 11PM CEST starting Monday. The measure will apply for three weeks. The Brussels government is explicitly banning gatherings of more than ten people between the hours of 11PM and 6AM.
Shops selling food or beverages and newsagents equipped with slot machines must close at 10PM too.
Consuming food will be banned on markets.
The Brussels regional crisis cell met at 5PM on Saturday with Brussels PM Rudi Vervoort (Francophone socialist) in the chair to consider the situation in the Brussels Region and take action. The meeting was originally planned for next Monday, but was brought forward after Mr Vervoort met with Belgian PM Sophie Wilmès (Francophone liberal) and given what are being described as ‘alarming corona figures’ in the capital. During the 7-day observation period from 16 to 22 September on average 336 new cases of coronavirus were recorded each day in the region.
Members of the regional cell include the mayors of all 19 Brussels municipalities as well as the heads of the capital’s six police zones.