Croatia makes mask-wearing mandatory in parliamentary sessions

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face masks
Photo By Medsile Via Iwaria

The presidency of Croatian Parliament on Tuesday passed a decision that its members (MPs) will have to wear masks at all parliamentary sessions, given the current epidemiological situation of COVID-19.

The decision was made unanimously, and if anyone refuses, the speaker of parliament will ask the member to leave the hall, and disobeying the rule will induce a warning and forced eviction by security staff.

According to the Croatian Institute of Public Health, there have been 145 new COVID-19 infections in the country in the last 24 hours, and 2,492 cases remain active. A total of 10,414 cases have been confirmed since late February when the outbreak started here.

It was also decided that during the parliament sessions, there will be a smaller number of MPs in the main hall, a maximum of 41 out of the total of 151 seats, and voting will take place in more halls. The ruling Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) will be entitled to have 16 MPs present, the Social Democratic Party (SDP) nine, the Homeland Movement three, the Bridge Party and the green-left bloc two each, and the other groups one each.

After Tuesday’s session of the parliamentary presidency, the Speaker of the Croatian Parliament, Gordan Jandrokovic, told the press that electronic voting would be possible, which would enable MPs who are ill or in self-isolation to vote.

The ruling HDZ won the most seats in the parliamentary elections on July 5. After the summer break, the work of the parliament will begin on Wednesday. The adoption of the Law on the Reconstruction of Zagreb after the earthquake will be a priority of the first parliamentary session.

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