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Italian police guard a shuttered St. Peter's Square Italian police guard a shuttered St. Peter's Square  (ANSA)

Covid-19: Vatican closes St. Peter’s Basilica to tourists

The Vatican announces stricter measures to control the spread of the covid-19 coronavirus, including closing St. Peter’s Basilica and other public services.

By Vatican News

St. Peter’s Basilica and Square will remain closed to tourists and guided tours until 3 April.

The Holy See Press Office announced the closures on Tuesday afternoon in a communique.

As of Tuesday, the Vatican Post Office’s mobile unit in St. Peter’s Square will also be shut down, along with the two sales points of the Vatican Publishing House and the Photographic Service of the Osservatore Romano, which will remain available online.

The Vatican’s mess hall will close its doors to employees as of Wednesday, but is activating a meal delivery service for the various offices of the Holy See and the Vatican City State.

Guests and employees can still access the Vatican pharmacy and supermarket, though entrances will be restricted to avoid crowds forming inside.

The measures will remain in effect until at least 3 April 2020 to avoid spreading the Covid-19 coronavirus, according to the communique.

10 March 2020, 14:59