Emergency situation

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First of all, you will get information from this FAQ (https://kkk.kriis.ee/en), which is developed in co-operation with various agencies and is updated every day. Secondly, on the same site you can see a chat-bot Suve, you can ask questions about the emergency, and hopefully the robot can answer most of them. At the moment, the chat robot is able to answer questions in Estonian and English. We are working to develop the Russian language version of the robot. Suve is based on artificial intelligence and has been taught to respond using these frequently asked questions as the database. The idea of an automated chat bot Suve was developed in co-operation with the Estonian start-up community, Garage 48 and Accelerate Estonia during the Hack the Crisis Hackathon.

On 16 March, the Emergency Response Centre new hotline 1247 started working, (when calling from outside Estonia +372 600 1247), which shares information on the spread of coronavirus and the emergency situation. The hotline is working in three languages (Estonia, Russian, English) 24/7 and is free of charge for the callers. No medical advice can be offered from this number. If you need medical consultation, please call 1220, where people with medical training respond to your call.

Last updated: 05.05.2020 18:48

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The public interest is, of course, understandable because tax-payers money is being used for the purchases. The Ministry of Finance and the State Shared Service Centre have analysed the special situation on the world markets and have concluded that currently it is not advisable to publish detailed procurement information. During the time of crises buyers compete for suppliers, and the state does not want to risk that our suppliers will be “hijacked”. This approach is also supported by the Public Information Act, which states that the head of a public or local government body or a legal entity of public law, may limit the use of information for internal use only, when the information pertains to national defence tasks and mitigation of the consequences of an emergency and the provision of resources for this purpose. This is the case when the disclosure of this information may affect the establishment of the reserve, as is in this case with the provision of personal protective equipment. Doctors and nurses, also police officers, rescue workers and others on the front line have been waiting for these supplies, as well as the rest of the population. There is a danger of outbidding for supplies and the supplies going to someone else, therefore the limits have been set for published information. Once the emergency situation resolves, and the supplies have arrived, additional information can be provided.

Last updated: 20.04.2020 15:04

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On March 12, the Government announced the establishment of the emergency situation to prevent the spread of the coronavirus in Estonia. The emergency situation has been in force until the end of the day of May 17. The end of the emergency situation does not mean all restrictions will be lifted as of that date. After the end of the emergency situation, the health care emergency is still in force. Restrictions due to the prevention of the spread of coronavirus will be lifted gradually.

Last updated: 18.05.2020 10:47

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The governemnt is not preparing to restrict human rights and freedom of speech.

Estonia defends fundamental rights during the emergency situation as well and guarantees the rights which are laid out in the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.

The government is also fulfilling its duty of notification appropriately.

On March 12, due to the pandemic spread of the coronavirus in the world and a more extensive spread of the virus in Estonia, the Government of the Republic declared an emergency situation (initially until May 1, 2020). On April 24, the government extended the emergency situation until May 17 (included), 2020.

Due to this, restrictions on national and cross-border movements have been established in Estonia, changes have been made to the provision of education and the courts administration, restrictions established on communication, etc.

This is a situation which meets the definition of an emergency situation referred to in Article 15 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, which is why on March 20, Estonia informed the Council of Europe of the measures taken.

It was also notified that Estonia will continue respecting international human rights, including fulfilling the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.

The goal of this notification is to ensure that in any possible later court actions the European Court of Human Rights is aware of the special conditions imposed in Estonia (e.g. restrictions on freedom of assembly) and uses the same basis for acting as Estonian courts.

Implementing the measures of the emergency situation and notifying the Council of Europe does not exempt Estonia from respecting fundamental rights. We are a democratic state and the emergency situation will not change that fact. All measures taken during the emergency situation must also be justified and proportionate.

Estonian state will adhere to valid laws and ensure the protection of the fundamental rights of individuals in the emergency situation as well.

See the notification of the Estonian ambassador.

NB! On 16 May, the Ambassador of Estonia to the Council of Europe informed the Secretary-General of the Council of Europe of the end of the emergency situation established in Estonia due to the pandemic spread of coronavirus and of the end of the derogation submitted pursuant to Article 15. The notifications are available on the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs: https://www.vm.ee/ and https://vm.ee/et/valisministeeriumi-kohustused-rahvusvaheliste-organisatsioonide-ees-eriolukorra-meetmetest.

Last updated: 17.05.2020 12:35

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Public meetings can resume from May 18.

From May 18 until the end of May, the organizer of a public meeting must ensure the adherence to:

  • the 2+2 rule;
  • the requirement that indoors the occupancy can be 50% at most but no more than 10 people;
  • the requirement that outdoors there can be no more than 100 participants.

Starting from June 1 it is allowed to hold a public meeting indoors with a higher number of participants than previously. The organizer of the meeting must ensure the adherence to:

  • the 2+2 rule;
  • the requirement that indoors the occupancy can be 50% at most but no more than 50 people;
  • the requirement that outdoors there can be no more than 100 participants.

Starting from July 1, the number of allowed participants will go up again.

Public meetings are allowed, provided that the organizer ensures the adherence to:

  • the 2+2 rule;
  • the requirement that indoors the occupancy can be 50% at most but no more than 500 people;
  • the requirement that outdoors there can be no more than 1000 participants.

Last updated: 18.05.2020 09:43

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The restrictions are still in force that are important for maintaining public health and containing the spread of the virus:

  1. 2+2 rule remains in force.
  2. People diagnosed with coronavirus and people who have been in close contact with the infected persons need to stay in isolation.
  3. People in care homes with a coronavirus diagnosis are prohibited from coming into contact with other people except the employees of the care home and medical staff.
  4. Catering establishments may remain open and alcohol can be sold until 22:00.
  5. Sports competitions with spectators are allowed only outdoors.
  6. Night-clubs, water-pipe cafes, adult entertainment clubs and other entertainment establishments are closed.
  7. Casinos and slot-machine arcades will remain closed until June 1. After June 1 they may open if the 2+2 rule is observed, and the 50% of the maximum capacity of the rooms is used. Not more than 50 persons may use the premises at the same time.
  8. No cruises or leisure travel will take place on Tallinn-Stockholm ferry lines.
  9. The restrictions for crossing the state border will remain in force (except for established derogations for Latvia, Lithuania, and Finland).

The Government will review the need for restrictions on a regular basis.

Last updated: 01.06.2020 10:13

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More information about the coronavirus and restrictions related to it is available calling 1247 (from abroad +372 600 1247).