Faced with the resurgence of contamination by the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus and the threat of a second wave, the authorities in several European countries have toughened anti-Covid measures the last days.
In France, the authorities have decided to make it compulsory to wear a mask in all closed establishments open to the public, “in particular shops”, from next week. This measure is also valid for bars, restaurants, museums and places of worship and has already started since Thursday, July 16 in the department of Mayenne, which has several epidemic outbreaks.
In Spain, nearly 4 million inhabitants of the agglomeration of Barcelona are called by the Catalan regional government, since this Friday, July 17, to “stay home” except for reasons of first necessity, due to the increase in positive Covid-19 cases.
Faced with the rebound in contagions, many Spanish regions, including Catalonia, have also strengthened the mandatory nature of the mask which must be worn at all times on public roads and in enclosed spaces. At the same time since Wednesday July 15, the inhabitants of the Catalan city of Lleida and the surrounding municipalities, totaling approximately 250,000 people are reconfigured.
Reconfined cities in Portugal and United Kingdom
In Portugal, in the region of the capital Lisbon, a new home confinement has been implemented since Wednesday July 1 for 700,000 inhabitants from around 20 neighborhoods. These measures were extended at least until the end of the month.
This drastic rule has also been implemented in the English city of Leicester in the center of the country, with the closure of non-essential stores, due to a local resurgence of positive cases of coronavirus. The re-containment will be partially lightened from Thursday July 24, announced the British government.
Taking the example of Scotland, wearing a mask will also become mandatory in all stores across the country starting July 24. However, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson encouraged, this Friday, July 17, the English to take public transport and return to their workplace from Saturday August 1, saying they hope for a “return to normal” by the end of the year.
Ireland was initially due to fully reopen its bars on Monday, July 13, but postponed the last phase of deconfinement. to Monday 10 August, due to a resurgence. Gatherings are limited to 50 people inside and 200 outside while masks are also becoming mandatory in stores.
Wearing a mask compulsory in Belgium, exit bans in Germany
With our Belgian neighbors, wearing a mask has become compulsory on Saturday July 11, for anyone at least 12 years old in closed public places after having only been taxed on public transport. Due to the slight rebound in infections, authorities have not announced any easing of restrictions on gatherings.
In anticipation of a resurgence, the German government authorizes reinforced containment measures locally with “exit bans” in limited geographic areas. This is a novelty in the country who until now had a flexible definition of confinements based largely on self-discipline and goodwill.
Finally, Hungary has prohibited access to its territory since mid-July nationals of African countries and South America, from most Asian countries and some European states, citing the global upsurge in coronavirus cases.