Once a symbol of the novel coronavirus disease crisis in the West — with images of army trucks transporting coffins from the overflowing morgue in the northern city of Bergamo seen around the world — Italy has happily seen infections and deaths plummet in recent weeks.
Some 17.8 million or one third of Italy’s population over the age of 12 had been fully vaccinated as of June 28, according to the government.
Long prohibited from entering the country, tourists from the European Union, the United States, Canada and Japan are also returning after the government removed a quarantine requirement for vaccinated visitors, or those who test negative for the virus.
Despite the progress, the health minister urged Italians to be vigilant as the COVID-19 Delta variant, which is causing havoc in many countries, spreads across Italy.
He said, “Caution and prudence is still needed, especially because of the new variants. The battle is not yet won.”