San Francisco Chronicle - (Sunday)

Nation eases restrictio­ns

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Bulgaria is loosening restrictio­ns ahead of Orthodox Easter and the start of the summer vacation season even as the COVID19 morbidity rate remains relatively high.

The government is allowing indoor church services on Palm Sunday and Easter but requiring them to be reduced in length. Worshipers also are advised not to touch or kiss religious icons, and to avoid crowds and wear protective masks.

The tourism sector, which normally provides up to 12% of the nation’s gross domestic product, has been hard hit by pandemic restrictio­ns and Bulgaria hopes to see visitors return soon to the country’s Black Sea resorts.

Health Minister Kostadin Angelov announced that foreign tourists arriving after May 1 must be tested, vaccinated or recovered from a COVID19 infection.

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