European countries are rolling out increasingly strict coronavirus restrictions as the continent’s second wave continues.
In Hungary, the government has proposed a series of tougher lockdown measures, in an effort to curb the spread of cases.
“If coronavirus infections rise at the current pace, our doctors, nurses and hospitals will not be able to cope with the burden,” Prime Minister Viktor Orban announced Monday on Facebook.
The new measures — which will come into force as of midnight on Tuesday, pending parliamentary approval — will include the closure of restaurants, universities and leisure facilities.
A curfew will also be imposed on all citizens from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. local time, unless they are considered exempt for work.
While Orban has said that all gatherings will be prohibited under the proposals, up to ten people will be permitted to participate in family gatherings, while a limit of 50 people will be placed on funerals.
In Italy, where a nationwide curfew is already in place, the association of doctors has called for a national lockdown.
“Drastic measures are needed, such as a total lockdown,” association president Filippo Anelli said Sunday, warning that Italy risks having 10,000 more deaths in a month’s time.
Meanwhile in France, a second nationwide lockdown has resulted in the country’s economic activity being 12% lower than normal in November, the governor of the Banque de France said Monday.
“This second lockdown has had a negative impact. We estimate that it is 12% (of GDP) lower than normal. But that’s almost three times less than the first lockdown,” Banque de France Governor Francois Villeroy de Galhau said on RTL radio Monday.
The governor added that he expects economic activity will be down between 9% and 10% in 2020.
Under the second national lockdown non-essential businesses in France such as bars and restaurants are closed.
In Germany, Chancellor Angela Merkel struck a more positive note Monday, when she congratulated US President-elect Joe Biden.
“The United States of America and Germany, as part of the European Union, must stand together to master the major challenges of our time,” Merkel said on Monday in Berlin, vowing to work with the US to fight the pandemic.
“Side by side in the difficult trials of the Coronavirus pandemic, side by side in the battle against climate change and its global ramifications and in the battle against terrorism, side by side for an open global economy and free trade, because those are the foundations of our welfare on both sides of the Atlantic,” she said.
And in Russia, the coronavirus response center said Monday that 21,798 new cases of coronavirus had been reported in 24 hours. That total is Russia’s highest daily tally since the pandemic began.
#Coronavirus #updates #Latest #world #news