Protest against new coronavirus rules, 'green pass' in Italy

Rome, July 23, (dpa/GNA) - In Italy, opponents of the so-called "green pass" have protested against stricter rules for entering restaurants and bars imposed in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

About 2,000 people gathered for a rally in the northern city of Turin late on Thursday night, according to media reports.

"No to the green pass," the demonstrators chanted.

The EU's digital coronavirus certificate is also called the green pass in Italy.

The protest followed a decision by Prime Minister Mario Draghi's government to tighten coronavirus rules in light of rising infection rates.

From August 6, proof of vaccination, a negative coronavirus test valid for 48 hours or proof of recovery from Covid-19 will be required in the country for indoor restaurant visits, museums, gyms and swimming pools, among other things.

The extended use of the green pass is not an arbitrary act, but a condition for openings, Draghi said in justifying the decision.

EU citizens can show their EU vaccination passport under the new rules. The document certifies, among other things, that vaccination is complete when 14 days have passed after the second dose.

In Italy, according to the Ministry of Health, the certificate will be valid 14 days after receiving the first dose.

For the population there, for example, a single vaccination dose is sufficient for a visit to the interior of a restaurant.

If the vaccination protection is not completed, however, the green pass loses its validity again, said a ministry spokesperson.

In the country of some 60 million, the number of new coronavirus infections has recently risen again.

On Thursday, health authorities registered almost 5,057 new infections within one day and 15 deaths. More than 53 per cent of the population over the age of 12 have been fully vaccinated so far.