France to implement extra Covid-19 measures in Lyon, Nice as cases climb

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People wearing protective face masks walk near the Old Port (Vieux Port) in Marseille, France, on September 17, 2020.
People wearing protective face masks walk near the Old Port (Vieux Port) in Marseille, France, on September 17, 2020. © Eric Gaillard, Reuters

France is to implement extra measures to curb the Covid-19 epidemic in the cities of Lyon and Nice, the health minister said Thursday, adding to the three other regions deemed as virus “red zones” where additional measures are already in place. The country registered more than 10,000 new confirmed coronavirus cases on Thursday, setting a new daily record. Health Minister Olivier Véran did not say what the extra measures for Lyon and Nice would be, but that local officials in those cities would have until the weekend to submit their plans for extra measures to the government in Paris.

France has this month seen a resurgence in the number of virus cases. Numbers in hospital and intensive care with Covid-19 are climbing too, though they are still a long way short of the peak reached in the spring.

Addressing French citizens, Véran said: “We are in a situation, especially in the regions that I have mentioned, where I can only ask you to redouble your efforts, particularly in reducing the number of people you see each day.”

Gatherings of family are a major source of Covid-19 infections, he said.

“If everyone reduced his number of social contacts, this would help reduce the spread of the virus”, he said.

The regions with extra anti-coronavirus measures already in place are Marseille, Bordeaux, and Guadeloupe, a French territory in the Caribbean.

Measures that came into force on Monday in Marseille and Bordeaux included stricter rules for beach gatherings, visiting the elderly in care homes, and attending outdoor public events.

After Véran’s announcements on Thursday, France reported a record 10,593 cases over the previous 24 hours, up from 9,784 on Wednesday. The figure represents the highest daily confirmed coronavirus case figure recorded in France since the epidemic began. The country also reported 50 new Covid-19 deaths on Thursday, bringing the national toll to 31,095.

REUTERS

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