All over Europe, drastic measures are reappearing

Place de la Concorde in Paris a little after the curfew on October 17, 2020. – Lewis Joly / AP / SIPA

Curfew, ban on meetings or even schools closed… The ingredients are different but each time the will of the European executives is the same: to find the recipe which will make it possible to push back, as effectively as possible, the second wave of coronavirus.

In France, where the number of contaminations reached a new record on Saturday with more than 32,000 new cases listed in 24 hours, a dozen large cities, including Paris and its suburbs, are now subject to a 9 p.m. curfew at 6 hours for at least four weeks. The measure concerns more than 20 million people.

A “very worrying” situation for the WHO

But it is not only in France where new drastic measures have been introduced. The situation is indeed deteriorating across Europe, with the number of new contaminations up 44% this week. The World Health Organization considers the situation “very worrying” on the continent.

In the United Kingdom, the most bereaved country in Europe (43,429 dead, 15,000 new cases on Friday), the authorities tightened the restrictions on Saturday: in London and in several other areas, or 11 million people, indoor meetings between parents and friends from different homes are prohibited. Lancashire (north-west) and Liverpool are on maximum health alert, which means the ban on meetings between different households indoors and outdoors, and the closure of pubs that do not serve meals. In Northern Ireland, pubs and restaurants closed for a month on Friday and school holidays were extended.

Distance learning in Poland

In Germany, who recorded 7,830 new cases in 24 hours, Angela Merkel solemnly asked her fellow citizens on Saturday to reduce their social relations as much as possible.

New restrictions also come into force in Warsaw and other major cities of Poland : closed middle and high schools will practice distance education, restaurants will have to close at 9 p.m., wedding ceremonies will be prohibited and the number of people admitted to shops, public transport and religious services limited.

In Czech republic, which has the highest rate of contaminations and deaths per 100,000 mainland residents, the government has asked the military to build a 500-bed field hospital outside of Prague.

Absolute record in Italy

Finally, Italy for its part reported 10,010 new cases on Friday, its absolute daily record, while bars and restaurants closed from midnight in Lombardy (north), the most affected region and Campania (south-west ) had already decided to close its schools this week.

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