Pochayiv under complete lockdown due to coronavirus outbreak in the monastery
Starting from April 21, Pochayiv will be closed as it is declared a quarantine zone. The district commission decided that as long as the Pochayiv Lavra refuses to go on lockdown and hold services without believers, they have nothing else to do but block the entire city, TSN reports.
From 10:00 AM and on, police checkpoints will be located at the entrances to the city and not let people out of Pochayiv without necessity, and only cars with food and medicine will be allowed into the city. The district authorities resorted to quarantine measures since the leadership of the Pochayiv Lavra did not cooperate with epidemiologists, when last week the patients with coronavirus were identified there, including the deacon of the Lavra, its choir singers and four other priests of the Moscow Patriarchate who serve in other churches, but were staying in the Lavra. Doctors have not been provided with the lists of contact persons who reside in the monastery, and disinfection was allowed only in the courtyard, while the emergency health workers were not let in the churches.
"The population of the city of Pochayiv is now recognized as having been in full contact, that is, so many contact persons that we simply can not count and track. As you know, yesterday the priest of the parish Church was confirmed to have coronavirus and, according to our data, almost the entire city of Pochayiv contacted this Church," said the Chairman of Kremenets Regional Council, Volodymyr Stefansky.
Already three dozen coronavirus cases were confirmed in the city, of which thirteen have been added in the last 24 hours alone. Epidemiologists believe that this is the result of the Palm Sunday celebrations when more than a hundred people gathered for the service inside the Lavra. However, the situation is getting even worse, they say, as yesterday hundreds of believers came to the Lavra to bless their food baskets. The video shows how the priests without masks sprinkle water on the cakes, while people are standing close to one another not observing the distance, and the majority of them wear no masks.
"The flow was constant, despite all the obstacles set by the police, despite all the entreaties on the part the police, people still decided to rally and the clergy, unfortunately, helped them. We saw more than two hundred people on the street. They did not stay there simultaneously, some of them came, the others left, but overall there were 300-350 to 400 people, says Head of the National Police of Ternopil region Oleksandr Bogomol.
The law enforcement instituted criminal proceedings on charges of the quarantine rules violations in the Pochayiv Lavra. Now they are interviewing witnesses and do not exclude that the organizers of mass meetings may face not only a fine but will be also held criminally liable.
As reported, in Ternopil, a 43-year-old resident of Pochayiv died. The woman was transported to the region because she needed artificial lung ventilation, and in the district hospital there is only one such device, and there are more patients every day. Only during this day, 13 cases of coronavirus were confirmed in Pochayiv.