PCR tests within 96 hours and 80 per cent capacity at Christmas and New Year events in UAE

People will be prohibited from hugging or shaking hands at gatherings in an effort to curb the spread of the coronavirus

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The UAE has announced Covid-19 safety measures for Christmas and New Year celebrations.

Venues must limit capacity to 80 per cent. Those attending events must present their Al Hosn green pass if required as well as proof of a negative PCR test result from within 96 hours.

People will be prohibited from hugging or shaking hands at gatherings in an effort to curb the spread of the coronavirus under the protocols approved by the National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority.

Temperature checks will take place at entry points and organisers are being asked to install barriers to manage crowds.

People must also continue to wear masks.

The measures were set out at the UAE's weekly coronavirus briefing on Wednesday.

The rules allow families to sit together without the need to follow physical distancing measures.

All other members of the public must maintain a distance of 1.5 metres from others.

Teams will be set up at events to ensure safety procedures are being followed.

Although Covid-19 safety rules differ from emirate to emirate — Dubai's are set by its own crisis committee — the wearing of masks in public places is mandatory.

Citizens and residents were praised during the briefing for their commitment to following coronavirus safety rules but were urged to continue playing their part in the UAE's steady recovery from the pandemic.

Booster shots central to controlling virus

A government spokesman said global studies had made clear the importance of receiving a booster dose of a Covid-19 vaccine to safeguard public health.

“Based on studies and research issued by the World Health Organisation, it indicates that people who received a supportive dose were less infected than those who did not receive the support dose even if they were exposed to infection with mild symptoms,” he said.

“Human health and safety is one of the most important priorities of the state, and therefore obtaining the booster and booster dose is considered an essential support for obtaining the antibodies necessary to prevent the mutations and genetic mutations of the coronavirus.”

Updated: December 16, 2021, 1:30 PM