RABAT (Reuters) – Morocco will keep its nightly curfew in place during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan when people gather after breaking their fast at sunset, the government said on Wednesday, underlining resolve to counter new variants of the coronavirus.
The decision to keep the 8 p.m.-6 a.m. curfew will hurt restaurants, shops and markets that make most of their money in the evenings, especially during Ramadan, which this year will begin on April 13 and run through May 12. Moroccan law prohibts public eating by day during the fasting period.
Morocco will also maintain until June financial aid for workers in some of sectors hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic including tourism.
The North African kingdom has confirmed almost half a million cases of COVID-19 and registered nearly 9,000 deaths from the global respiratory pandemic.
However, it has rolled out a vaccination campaign more rapidly than its neighbours, inoculating 4.38 million people with AstraZeneca and Sinopharm shots to date.
(Reporting by Ahmed Eljechtimi; Editing by Mark Heinrich)