Europe Covid-19: Italian regions shut down and Paris toughened rules as Europe smashed virus records

Europe Covid-19: Italian regions shut down and Paris toughened rules as Europe smashed virus records

Italy is subject to a nationwide curfew from 10 PM to 5 AM, with bars and restaurants closing at 6 PM, while some regions face more stringent restrictions.

Residents of the “red zone” regions – Lombardy, Piedmont, Valle d’Aosta and Calabria – are only entitled to leave the home for necessity, health or work. People in the “orange zones” are prevented from leaving their cities except for work or health reasons – bars and restaurants are closed except for pick-up and drop-off.

Italy reported 35,505 new cases and 445 deaths Thursday, bringing its total cases to 824,879 and deaths to 40,192, according to Health Ministry data.

“These numbers are not a good sign,” said Gianni Reda, director of the ministry’s prevention department. “The virus works and we have to stop it.”

In neighboring France, Paris also announced tougher measures as the country reported 58,046 new cases on Thursday, according to the French Health Agency. The country has the highest number of infections in Europe, with 1.6 million infections.

From Friday, the police said, delivering food, eating outside and selling alcoholic beverages is forbidden in Paris between 10pm and 6am.

“The second wave is coming at us and it is brutal,” French Health Minister Olivier Ferrand told a news conference on Thursday. He said that if the virus continues to spread at this rate, then “the second wave may be worse and longer” than the first, and it may take “until mid-December” to stabilize.

Ferran urged people to respect the national lockdown or face “high risk of saturation” of hospitals by mid-November.

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New closures as case status rises

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis announced on Thursday that Greece will enter a three-week national lockdown starting Saturday after nearly 10,000 new cases were reported within five days.

People will need to text the authorities before leaving home and high schools will be closed.

Denmark has also announced new restrictions in seven municipalities after scientists identified a mutant strain of the coronavirus linked to the mink population. According to the government, the mutated form of the virus may have spread to humans from small mammals.

Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen said on Wednesday that all minke animals in the country will be killed due to fears of a mutation in the virus.

Danish cafes and bars will be closed from Saturday, along with indoor sports venues, cultural centers and public transportation, and people should avoid traveling outside of their area.

Meanwhile, British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab and Swedish Prime Minister Stephen Löfven are in quarantine after possible exposure to the Corona virus, as it appeared on Thursday.

A British government advisor told CNN that Raab was “informed that an individual who had been in close contact with him recently has tested positive” as England has entered a month-long national lockdown.

Lovin said that someone in his immediate vicinity had contact with a person with Covid-19 but had tested negative.

A pedestrian wears a mask passes through a digital display in London showing the new measures as England enters a second coronavirus lockdown on November 5.

“Evolution is going in the wrong direction quickly. More infected. More people are dying,” Leuven wrote on Facebook.

Sweden announced earlier this week that it would tighten restrictions in three additional regions, including limiting gatherings in bars and restaurants to eight.

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Austria and Poland also reported a record spike in cases on Thursday as Austria entered its second national lockdown this week, which includes a curfew from 8pm to 6am and the shutdown of recreational facilities.

Norway, which has one of the lowest infection rates in Europe, has seen a “spike” in cases, according to the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.

Norwegians have been urged to “stay home as much as possible” starting Saturday as nationwide restrictions were announced, including the closing of bars and restaurants at midnight and more distance learning.

Prime Minister Erna Solberg warned of a “very dangerous” situation, adding, “We must act now to avoid a new lockdown as in March.”

Bint Hui, the Norwegian Minister of Health, said that if current trends continue, “this will create great challenges for our health service, as we see happening in country after country in Europe.”

Chris Lyakos, Luke McGee, James Frater, Henrik Peterson, Amy Cassidy, Nina Avramova, and Antonia Mortensen of CNN contributed to the report.

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