So which regions were included in each zone, how they differ and why Lutsk and Ternopil do not obey the decisions of central authorities? Let's start with the origins - zoning.
Quarantine zones: what is prohibited and under what conditions
As we have said, there are four of them: green, yellow, orange and red.
The green zone provides for:
- being in public places wearing masks or respirators;
- holding mass events: no more than 1 person per 5 sq. m;
- attending cinemas with a 50% occupancy rate;
- the number of passengers in public transport is limited by the number of seats.
In the yellow zone (+ restrictions on the green) it is prohibited:
- visits to social institutions with older people for other purpose than providing crisis services.
In the orange zone (+ restrictions on the yellow) it is prohibited:
- activities of tourist accommodation establishments (hostels, tourist centers, etc.), except for hotels;
- work of entertainment establishments, restaurants at night;
- planned hospitalizations in hospitals;
- work of gyms, fitness centers, cultural institutions;
- starting new shifts in children's camps;
- restriction for mass events: 1 person per 20 sq. m and no more than 100 people.
In the red zone (+ restrictions on the orange) it is prohibited:
- public transport operation;
- visiting educational institutions;
- activities of shopping and entertainment centers, cafes and restaurants.
A region can move from one to another zone, provided that for five days in a row there will be changes in one of certain indicators, namely: bed occupancy (no more than 50%), the number of tests (at least 24 tests per 100 thousand population), the rate of detection of coronavirus cases (no more than 11%) and the dynamics of growth in the number of cases of infection (more than 10%).
Which regions are included in each of the zones
Ternopil, Lutsk and Kitsmansky district of Chernivtsi region were in the red zone.
The yellow zone includes 40 districts in Volyn, Zhytomyr, Vinnytsia, Ternopil, Chernivtsi, Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk and Zakarpattya regions.
The orange zone includes the Lyubeshevsky and Lutsky districts in the Volyn region; Pustomyty, Mykolayivsky, Peremyshlyansky districts in Lviv region and Lviv city; Berezhany and Buchatsky district of Ternopil region; Tismetsky district in Ivano-Frankivsk region and the regional center.
All other regions, including Kyiv, are in the green zone.
Lutsk and Ternopil disagree
On the very first day of the "color" quarantine, the local authorities of Lutsk and Ternopil announced that they would not fulfill the orders of the Cabinet of Ministers and tighten the quarantine.
Note that we are talking specifically about cities, this does not apply to other districts of the Volyn and Ternopil regions.
Lutsk: "We are against the destruction of people's lives"
Mayor's advisor Igor Polishchuk said that Lutsk was taken to the red zone "for no particular reason."
"The true motives of this decision are not clear, because recently nothing has changed in the statistics on the Covid-19 in the city," Polishchuk said.
He called the government's decisions to counter the spread of coronavirus "unintelligent, untimely and unprofessional" and noted that the City Council would not make any decisions about stopping transport or closing any establishments.
According to VolynPost, the police warned the carriers not to operate from August 3, otherwise it will issue protocols.
Law enforcement officers carried out a similar work with other institutions that cannot operate in the red zone: each institution received a warning regarding the ban on working from Monday.
And this is how the city hall responded:
"All entrepreneurs, enterprises, institutions and organizations, in respect of which a protocol on violation of the quarantine rules will be drawn up in connection with the groundless inclusion of our city in the red zone, will be provided with a full range of legal services to defend in court and appeal against these protocols."
Deputy Mayor Grigory Nedopad summed up that quarantine in the city will not be strengthened.
“We are against the unjustified blocking of our city and the destruction of people's lives. Since the return to strict quarantine hides the undermining of the economy, the loss of jobs, the destruction of small and medium-sized businesses. People will not stand such mockery, because the decision to refer Lutsk and Ternopil to the red zone cannot be called otherwise than mockery," he wrote on his Facebook page.
During an extraordinary session of the city council on August 3, MPs voted against the red quarantine zone and asked the country's leadership to cancel the strengthening of lockdown in the city.
"Lutsk must live, business and transport must work," Polishchuk added.
Ternopil: "They want to take us into the blockade"
Mayor Serhiy Nadal expressed his categorical disagreement with the putting the city to the red zone and noted on August 1 that the government should reconsider its decision.
"Is it because Ternopil residents are collecting signatures in defense of the Ukrainian language, and an anti-terrorist operation failed in Lutsk? Is it because they defended their national position under the walls of the Verkhovna Rada in Kyiv? And opposed distance learning? Is this how they do it with the "rebellious" regional centers?" wrote Nadal.
He said that he has every reason to assert that Ternopil was prematurely attributed to the red zone. According to the mayor, the incidence rates in the city have declined in recent days and are kept at the same low level.
"I consider the decision of the Central Commission on Fuel and Energy Security and Emergencies purely political. It seems that they want to isolate Ternopoly from Ukraine. They want to take us into a blockade," Nadal added.
An extraordinary session of the City Council, which took place on August 3, announced its strong disagreement with the attribution of Ternopil to the red quarantine zone.
Nadal urged the Minister of Infrastructure not to stop railway communication with the city, because, as you know, Ukrzaliznytsia has stopped selling tickets for passenger trains from Lutsk and Ternopil.
However, according to the mayor of the city, the company still sold tickets after the restrictions were imposed. During the trip, passengers of the Kyiv-Ternopil train learned that the train would not make a stop in Ternopil, which caused a riot.
"Only when the townspeople raised a riot, the head of the train still agreed to stop and drop the people off in Ternopil," writes Ternopil News. The publication notes that 85 residents of the regional center, including parents with children with cerebral palsy, were traveling on the train.
The reaction of the authorities
Deputy Interior Minister Anton Herashchenko warned that mayors will be responsible for everyone who died from the coronavirus.
"Those mayors of cities who are engaged in populism who want to stand aside, tell that people do not need quarantine, they will be responsible for everyone who died in their cities," he said.
President Volodymyr Zelensky demanded from the government a clear explanation of the conditions for adaptive quarantine. In particular, he asked to tell the citizens how and why the division into zones takes place.
Quarantine riot. Lutsk and Ternopil are not pioneers
When Ukrainians began to complain en masse about the restrictive measures due to Covid-19, the Cherkasy authorities relaxed the city's quarantine.
The reaction from the center was immediate: the head of the Ministry of Health, Maxym Stepanov, condemned such a decision, and the Minister of Internal Affairs Arsen Avakov said that the response to the weakening of quarantine measures in Cherkasy would be tough.
Zelensky personally intervened in the situation, during a video message he conveyed "greetings" to the mayor of the city Anatoly Bondarenko from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Security Service of Ukraine. To which Bondarenko said that he would not be intimidated by criminal prosecution.
On the fact of the weakening of quarantine, criminal proceedings were opened, during which the mayor was even summoned for interrogation as a witness.
From the latest news, it is known that Bondarenko decided to participate in the local elections in 2020.