Coronavirus digest: Scandinavian airlines lift mask mandates

Starting Monday, four Scandinavian airlines are set to drop in-flight mask requirements for regional itineraries. Travelers flying between Denmark, Norway and Sweden will no longer require masks on board.

SAS, Norwegian, Wideroe and Flyr will do away with their mask mandates.

Wideroe spokeswoman Silje Brandvoll told Norwegian radio: “The Norwegian infection control guide no longer requires domestic passengers to wear face masks.”


In Latvia, Prime Minister Krisjanis Karins announced a lockdown from October 21 until November 15, with only essential services available and a curfew in place from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. Karins apologized to the fully vaccinated and pleaded with a reluctant public to get vaccinated in a country where only 54% of adults have gotten the shots so far, among the lowest rates in the EU.

In Germany, the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) announced Monday that the country’s seven-day incidence of new coronavirus infections has risen again and is now at 74.4. The number indicates how many new infections per 100,000 inhabitants are recorded within one week.

adjuvanted coronavirus vaccine contender VLA2001.

Valneva said its latest trial showed that the vaccine prompted a stronger immune response and fewer side effects compared with the AstraZeneca vaccine.


In New Zealand, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has extended the lockdown in Auckland, the country’s biggest city, by two weeks to control the spread of the delta variant.

Meanwhile, in Australia thousands of children returned to Sydney’s schools on Monday after months of home learning as the country’s largest city relaxed more coronavirus restrictions.

As vaccinations increase, the mask mandate in offices has also been lifted and large gatherings will now be allowed, both in homes and outdoors.


Indonesia and Malaysia will soon start a travel corridor between the two countries and decide maritime borders as per the international law, Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi said on Monday following a meeting with her Malaysian counterpart.

Singapore is expanding its no-quarantine scheme to include fully vaccinated travelers from eight countries.

The Southeast Asian business hub will open its air travel lanes to passengers from Britain, Canada, Denmark, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain and the United States from Tuesday as it relaxes restrictions and prepares to live with the coronavirus.

Pakistan has recorded its lowest number of daily COVID-19 infections in almost 12 months.

The country reported 663 new cases and 11 deaths on Monday, according to government data.

The record dip comes after a steady decline in the virus caseload over the last few weeks.