March 12, 2020 / 11:43 AM / 20 days ago

Ireland to shut schools, universities until March 29 over coronavirus

FILE PHOTO: Ireland's Prime Minister (Taoiseach) Leo Varadkar arrives for the second day of the European Union leaders summit, held to discuss the EU's long-term budget for 2021-2027, in Brussels, Belgium, February 21, 2020. Ludovic Marin/Pool via REUTERS

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Ireland will shut schools, universities and childcare facilities until March 29 in response to the spread of the coronavirus, acting Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said on Thursday.

“From 6 p.m. today, the following measures are being put in place and they will stay in place until March 29: schools, colleges and childcare facilities will close from tomorrow, where possible teaching will be done online or remotely,” Varadkar said in a televised statement.

“Our advice is that all indoor mass gatherings of more than 100 people and outdoor mass gatherings of more than 500 people should be cancelled. You need to continue to go to work if you can, but where possible you should work from home.”

(This story corrects limit on outdoor mass gatherings to 500 from 5,000).

Reporting by Padraic Halpin;Editing by Kevin Liffey; Editing by Peter Graff

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