COVID-19: containments and curfews in Europe in the face of contamination records

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Two-thirds of French people subject to a curfew, Ireland and Wales confined, contaminations records in Germany: the situation is "serious" in Europe, the new epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic, warn governments.

The continent exceeded 8 million cases and 256,000 deaths on Thursday, according to a report established by AFP.

Hailed for its good management of the first epidemic wave in the spring, Germany (nearly 9,900 dead) recorded nearly 11,300 new cases in 24 hours, an absolute record.

The situation has become very serious overall, said Thursday Lothar Wieler, president of the Robert Koch Institute for Public Health Surveillance (RKI), while the Minister of Health, Jens Spahn, is contaminated.

The authorities have issued assembly bans, a southern Alpine canton is almost confined, the mask is compulsory in certain streets of Berlin …

In Ireland, to hope celebrate Christmas properly, according to Prime Minister Micheal Martin, the toughest measures in Europe came into force at midnight on Wednesday: the entire population is re-confined for six weeks, non-essential businesses are closed, but schools will remain open.

Dublin, the Irish capital, had taken on the appearance of a ghost town on Thursday. It's a bit strange and poignant, confided Sunniva O'Flynn, a 57-year-old woman, in an almost deserted street. There is this kind of cloud of sadness again, this feeling that the city is abandoned.

In Grafton Street, one of Dublin's main shopping streets, there was no sign of the usual hustle and bustle. Only a few masked travelers were on the usually crowded trams.

Wales will in turn be confined on Friday for two weeks. In the rest of the United Kingdom, the most bereaved country in Europe (44,158 dead), more or less severe restrictions affect 28 million English people, including London, and pubs and restaurants are closed in Northern Ireland.

France

In France, where more than 26,600 cases have been diagnosed in 24 hours, the government extended Thursday the night curfew (9 p.m. to 6 a.m.), which will affect from Saturday 46 million people in Paris and in the main cities, or two-thirds of the population, for six weeks.

Jean Castex after a video conference with the president and the mayors at the Elysee Palace in Paris.

French Prime Minister Jean Castex.

Photo: Getty Images / GONZALO FUENTES

The coming weeks will be hard and our hospital services will be put to the test, warned Prime Minister Jean Castex, waiting for a month of November trying and a number of deaths (already more than 34,000) which will keep increasing.

All of Europe is blazing up.

French Minister of Health Olivier Véran

The Czech Republic, which has by far the highest number of new cases and deaths per 100,000 inhabitants over the past two weeks, instituted partial containment on Thursday until November 3: travel restrictions and contacts, closures of all non-essential stores and services.

Belgium has opted for a nighttime curfew and the closure of cafes and restaurants for a month, with authorities speaking of a situation much worse than in the spring. The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sophie Wilmès, is in intensive care.

In northern Italy, Lombardy, economic lung and the most affected region of the country, imposes a night curfew from Thursday for three weeks. Campania, in the south, will follow on Friday.

Greece's two main cities, Athens and Thessaloniki, will also be subject to a nighttime curfew from Saturday.

The poorest country in the EU, Bulgaria decided on Thursday to make the mask compulsory in busy outdoor spaces. Health Minister Kostadin Anguelov expressed concern at the situation of medical personnel: They are all tired, a large part of them are contaminated, sick, some are in intensive care. We need help.

Spain

The situation also continues to worsen in Spain (34,366 deaths), which has become the first EU country, and the sixth in the world, to exceed one million cases of coronavirus.

The Spanish authorities urgently imposed new restrictions, with the partial closure of a dozen new cities, including Zaragoza, and certain regions.

Other European countries on Thursday broke contamination records: Denmark (760 new cases, for 6.8 million inhabitants), Croatia (1,563), whose government is concerned about a large number of micro-homes, Bosnia (999) …

Mette Frederiksen during a meeting with Angela Merkel in June 2019.

Mette Frederiksen, the Danish Prime Minister.

Photo: Getty Images / Omer Messinger

The epidemic is spreading quickly across Europe, which is now the epicenter, observed Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen.

Contamination record also in Portugal where three municipalities in the north, or 150,000 people, will have to completely reconfigure themselves on Friday, and travel between municipalities will be banned throughout the country for the feast of All Saints, from October 30 to November 3.

Hopes for an effective vaccine have been clouded by the death of a volunteer in Brazil from complications from COVID-19.

The latter, a 28-year-old doctor, had participated in the tests of the vaccine developed by the University of Oxford against COVID-19 in Brazil. This is the first death of a volunteer taking part in testing for one of the many ongoing vaccine trials around the world.

The pandemic has killed at least 1,133,136 people around the world since the end of December, according to an AFP report on Thursday. More than 41,304,020 cases of infection have been diagnosed.

Read also :

  • COVID-19: part of Europe barricades itself against the virus
  • EU will no longer recommend that its members accept Canadian travelers


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