Netherlands enters second strict 5-week lockdown amid rising coronavirus cases

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The Netherlands will enter a tough second lockdown for at least five weeks, the country's prime minister has announced.

Households have been urged to welcome no more than two visitors over the age of 13 from Tuesday, although an exception will be made for three days around Christmas when they can welcome three.

CHRISTMAS SHOPPING 'CANCELED' IN GERMANY BEFORE CORONAVIRUS LOCKDOWN

Empty tables wait for customers at ‘t Blauwe Theehuis, or Blue Tea-House, in Amsterdam’s Vondelpark, Monday, Dec. 14, 2020. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)

In a rare televised address, marked by the sound of protesters banging pots and pans outside his office, Mark Rutte told the nation: "The Netherlands is closing down. We realize the gravity of our decisions, right before Christmas."

The Netherlands is the latest European country to announce it will be enforcing strict measures over the festive period following a spike in infections, with Germany earlier announcing similar restrictions.

People in the Netherlands have been advised to stay at home, not travel to work, and to avoid contact with others as much as possible.

Shoppers walk down Kalverstraat in Amsterdam, Netherlands, Monday, Dec. 14, 2020. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)

All public places – including daycare centers, gyms, museums, zoos, cinemas, hairdressers, and beauty salons – will close until 19 January.

Schools will also close until 18 January.

Click here to read more at Sky News.

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