Aug 15, 2021 - World

Sri Lanka bans public gatherings amid COVID-19 surge

A Sri Lankan woman reacts as she receives a jab at a vaccination center in Colombo, Sri Lanka
A Sri Lankan woman reacts as she receives a jab at a vaccination center in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Photo: Tharaka Basnayaka/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Sri Lanka on Sunday banned all public gatherings and advised people to avoid public spaces amid a worsening COVID-19 situation, AP reports.

Why it matters: The country is struggling to contain a rapid surge of cases as daily infections continue to rise, according to Reuters' tracker.

  • Wedding receptions will be banned starting Tuesday, while restaurants can only operate at 50% capacity.

State of play: Hospitals and morgues are being overrun because of the surging case and death numbers, per AP.

  • The country has held mass cremations to try to deal with the backlog of corpses.
  • This month, the Sri Lankan Medical Association wrote a letter to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa expressing "grave concern" about the rapid spread of the virus and the lack of medical facilities for COVID-19 patients.
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