Even when France became the first country in Europe to pass two million detected cases of coronavirus infection this week, authorities expressed optimism that several weeks of movement restrictions and social interactions had begun to slow the spread of the virus.
Our collective efforts have begun to bear fruit, said Jrme Salomon, a senior health ministry official, at a news conference Tuesday.
Still, French officials warned that blocking restrictions would have to remain in place for at least a few more weeks. France registered more than 45,000 new cases in the previous 24 hours, bringing the total to 2,036,755.
The number of patients admitted to Covid-19 peaked at nearly 33,500 this week slightly more than during the first wave last spring and the pressure on French hospitals is still very strong, Salomon said.
Over 46,000 deaths have been linked to the virus in France.
France last month became one of the first countries in Europe to turn into a nationwide blockade, albeit a significantly less draconian than the measures imposed in the spring.
Public gatherings are banned, restaurants, bars and cinemas are closed once again and movement outside the home is restricted. But parks and schools are still open and a wider range of businesses are allowed to remain open.
The boundaries may begin to be lifted next month.
French authorities are considering allowing small businesses and shops to reopen before Christmas. Catholic worshipers also protested in recent days, demanding that the government ease the ban on religious services.
But officials said they would only loosen the rules if the trends remained encouraging. A government spokesman, Gabriel Attal, told a news conference Wednesday that while there may be an adjustment to the rules next month, the country was far from lifting the blockade.
At the same time, officials tried to reassure the public, saying that while the road may be long and difficult, the place was on track.
Your efforts have begun to pay off, you definitely should not stop them, Olivier Vran, Minister of Health, told the BFM TV news channel Tuesday. Yes it is long, yes it is difficult, but that is the price to return to a normal life.
In other news from around the world:
Sweden the model of very light constraints has been the subject of fascination even as the effectiveness of the approach is still debated. But on Tuesday, King Carl XVI Gustaf captured a country that was moving dramatically to cope with a sharp rise in the virus: Hold on tight, he said in a statement posted on Instagram. The government announced stricter restrictions in the country since the coronavirus first appeared and warned there would be darker days ahead. While the number of Swedes deaths from Covid-19 is still pale compared to those countries like Italy or Spain, it is more than 10 times higher than in Finland or Norway.
Turkish the government, facing growing public outrage over its pandemic treatment and allegations that it is hiding the true coronavirus number as the death toll rises, announced it would close classes and impose new restrictions on movement over the weekends as part of a mass of measures to slow the spread. Restaurants and cafes will only be allowed to serve products, and shopping malls will be forced to close at 8pm Turkey has reported at least 11,700 deaths, with more than 420,000 cases of infection. Local officials and opposition politicians say the government is hiding the true number of deaths.
Condition of South Australia will go into blockage for six days to contain a rising explosion. The batch, which has been tracked into a quarantine for a traveler at a hotel, has included 22 cases since Saturday. Starting Wednesday midnight, only one person per family will be able to go out each day to access essential services such as food or medical services. Restaurants, cafes, pubs and retail stores will be closed, as will schools and universities. Sports and physical activities in nature are prohibited and masks will be mandatory. After the six-day blockade, South Australia will face another eight days with fewer restrictions, details of which have not yet been announced.
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