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Paris prepares for a second 'lockdown' in attempt to push down coronavirus cases

New Paris regulations

  • Bars in Paris, along with Lyon and nine other cities on ‘heightened alert’, to close at 10pm from tonight
  • Ten person restriction at gatherings
  • Number of attendees at weddings and parties limited to 30. 
  • Gyms and other indoor sporting facilities will remain closed.
  • Remains mandatory for all pedestrians to wear face masks in public areas in the capital.  

Paris is set to impose strict new regulations in attempt to slow the spike in coronavirus cases.

Emmanuel Macron’s government has ordered bars in Paris, along with Lyon and nine other cities on ‘heightened alert’, to close at 10pm from tonight.

There is also a 10-person restriction at public gatherings with attendees at weddings and parties limited to 30.  

Gyms and other indoor sporting facilities will also remain closed and it remains mandatory for all pedestrians to wear face masks in public areas in the capital. 

The move comes as Macron tries to avoid imposing a full lockdown across the country with the French economy already set to shrink by 8.7 per cent this year.

The French government recently announced that it would be pumping €100billion (£91billion) into the economy as part of a recovery plan. 

Macron hopes that this will help the French economy to get moving again by 2022. 

France yesterday recorded 14,412 confirmed cases of coronavirus and 39 deaths. 

The new measures introduced in Paris come as France is seeing a squeeze on its hospitals. 

Medics in the capital, along with Marseille, have been forced to postpone scheduled surgeries to free up space. 

Patients are still facing backlogs caused by the lockdown in March and April – and more than 6,000 coronavirus patients are now being treated in French hospitals.   

And at least 10 per cent of French intensive care beds are now occupied with COVID patients.  

Paris is set to enter a strict second lockdown in attempt to slow the spike in coronavirus cases. Pictured: Parisians drinking outside at a bar last night before the restrictions bare introduced

Paris is set to enter a strict second lockdown in attempt to slow the spike in coronavirus cases. Pictured: Parisians drinking outside at a bar last night before the restrictions bare introduced

The strict measures have continued across France including in Marseille where bars and restaurants have been ordered to close for a week.

Local business owners and officials have protested against the closure order after the announcement was made last week.

They accused the central government in Paris of singling out their rival Mediterranean city for punishment.

Marseille Mayor Michèle Rubirola said that she had not been consulted about the decision to enforce a second lockdown in the area – which left her ‘astonished and angry’.

‘The Marseille town hall was not consulted. Nothing in the health situation justifies these announcements,’ she wrote on Twitter.

She added: ‘I won’t allow the people of Marseille to become the victims of political decisions that no-one understands.’

Benoît Payan, Marseille’s first deputy mayor, also criticised the restrictions and asked the French government for a 10-day reprieve to show that the city’s own measures were working.

He said: ‘Once again our territory is being sanctioned, punished, singled out. Our city has been put in virtual confinement without anyone having been consulted.

‘The statements [from the government] are irrational. Marseille deserves better than being beaten down, or of serving as an example.’

Renaud Muselier, president of the regional council that includes Marseille, added that the closures amounted to a ‘collective punishment’.

He took to Twitter and said: ‘This decision is unilateral, ill-conceived and unfair.’

But Mr Veran responded to the criticism by stating that the measures had been put in place to protect public health.

He also claimed that city officials were given notice of the announcement in advance.

The strict measures have continued across France including in Marseille where bars and restaurants have been ordered to close for a week. Pictured: Restaurant owner packs away chairs in Marseille

The strict measures have continued across France including in Marseille where bars and restaurants have been ordered to close for a week. Pictured: Restaurant owner packs away chairs in Marseille

Marseille Mayor Michèle Rubirola said that she had not been consulted about the decision to enforce a second lockdown in the area - which left her 'astonished and angry'. Pictured: Diners eating out for a final time yesterday ahead of the new rules

Marseille Mayor Michèle Rubirola said that she had not been consulted about the decision to enforce a second lockdown in the area – which left her ‘astonished and angry’. Pictured: Diners eating out for a final time yesterday ahead of the new rules








The new regulations in Paris have striking resemblance to those introduced across the UK by Boris Johnson. 

The Prime Minister’s ‘Rule of Six’ limit on the number of people socialising has now been in place for two weeks.

Face masks have also been mandatory on public areas including shops and public transport.

Tough new fines for failing to self-isolate for any one with symptoms for coronavirus also come into force across parts of the UK today.

People across England will be legally required to self-isolate from this week if they test positive for coronavirus or are contacted by the test and trace service. 

If they do not they risk being hit with new fines starting at £1,000 and increasing up to £10,000 for repeat offenders or serious breaches.  

The new measures have striking resemblance to those introduced across the UK by Boris Johnson. Pictured: Crowd of people spill out into the street in Bristol after the 10pm curfew early closing of pubs and bars

The new measures have striking resemblance to those introduced across the UK by Boris Johnson. Pictured: Crowd of people spill out into the street in Bristol after the 10pm curfew early closing of pubs and bars

The government has also introduced an identical 10pm curfew on pubs and restaurants.

But it was recently claimed that the curfew did more harm than good. 

Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham has demanded an urgent review of the measure, saying it had merely resulted in people gathering in shops and homes.

‘I received reports that the supermarkets were absolutely packed out to the rafters with people gathering,’ he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

‘I think there needs to be an urgent review of the emerging evidence from police forces across the country. My gut feeling is that this curfew is doing more harm than good.

‘It creates an incentive for people to gather in the street or more probably to gather in the home. That is the opposite of what local restrictions here are trying to do.’    

The UK yesterday confirmed 6,041 new infections and 35 deaths in 24 hours.

It comes as the leader of Madrid has rejected calls for a new lockdown in the Spanish capital despite a mounting crisis in the city which is seeing thousands of new coronavirus cases per day. 

Isabel Diaz Ayuso said ‘the solution is not a total confinement’ and demanded more help from the Spanish government as new restrictions were imposed on parks, shops and restaurants in another eight districts today. 

It comes as Madrid's regional president Isabel Diaz Ayuso (pictured) has rejected calls for the city to go back into lockdown despite a surge in coronavirus cases

It comes as Madrid’s regional president Isabel Diaz Ayuso (pictured) has rejected calls for the city to go back into lockdown despite a surge in coronavirus cases 








Ayuso, who has previously argued that ‘people get run over every day but that doesn’t mean we ban cars’, is opposing tougher restrictions despite calls for new measures from Spain’s health minister.  

Protesters hit the streets outside Madrid’s regional parliament on Sunday with hundreds of people demanding an end to the restrictions and complaining of discrimination against poorer areas of the city. 

Madrid piled up nearly 18,000 new cases last week alone and more than 40 per cent of its intensive care beds are now filled up with virus patients, raising fears of a return to the dark days of March and April. 

Spain as a whole is recording more than 10,000 cases per day and an average of 350 people are going into hospital every 24 hours.   

The worsening second wave has led the Spanish government to predict a worse economic slump in 2020 than previously predicted. 

Official forecasts will be revised from a contraction of 9.3 per cent to between 10 and 11 per cent, local media said on Sunday. 

The budget deficit is also likely to be worse than the 10.3 per cent of GDP which was announced as a target in May. 

The Spanish economy contracted a record 17.8 per cent in the second quarter compared with the previous quarter and 21.5 per cent compared with the same quarter a year earlier. 

Early indicators in August showed the recovery initiated in July slowed down during the summer as the second wave began to mount. 

In Madrid, more than one in five tests are now coming back positive – easily the highest rate in Spain.  

The city with its surrounding region is at the epicentre of the second wave of infections, with Catalonia urging its people not to travel to Madrid.   

Madrid had 455 people in intensive care as of last Friday, filling up 40.1 per cent of ICU beds, while 25.4 per cent of all hospital capacity is being used for Covid-19 patients. 

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