► Curfew in Belgium
The Belgian government put in place a curfew from midnight to 5 a.m. on Saturday, October 17, and all cafes and restaurants in the country will have to close Monday, October 19 for at least a month.
“Week after week, the numbers are doubling, they are skyrocketing (…) it’s an exponential increase”, justified the Prime Minister Alexander De Croo, while Belgium is one of the European countries most bereaved by the pandemic (more than 10,300 dead).
→ LARGE FORMAT Covid-19: in the face of restrictive measures, the weariness of Europeans
→ EXPLANATION Coronavirus: Europe is refining its vaccination strategy
► In Poland, large cities are in the “red zone”
Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki asked these fellow citizens to ” stay home “ and of ” work abroad “. New restrictions came into effect in Warsaw and other major cities, now considered to be “Red areas”, with in particular the closure of all middle and high schools. Restaurants must lower their curtains at 9 p.m., wedding ceremonies are banned and the number of people admitted to shops, public transport and church services is now limited.
► In Italy, wearing a mask is compulsory outside
In Lombardy, all bars and restaurants must now close at midnight, but from 6 p.m. cafes are only allowed to serve customers seated at a table. All amateur sports activities have been suspended and visits are prohibited in residences for the elderly, with some exceptions.
→ REPORT. Covid-19, Italy relies on rapid detection tests
In Campania, the regional authorities have decided to close schools and have banned celebrations and funeral processions.
Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte has already imposed, on October 7, the wearing of a mask outside throughout the country, on pain of a fine of up to € 1,000. According to the Italian press, the government is also considering introducing a curfew from 10 p.m.
► Meetings are prohibited in London
The British authorities have further tightened the restrictions, while the United Kingdom is the most bereaved country in Europe (43,429 dead, 15,000 new cases Friday, October 16). Across England (over 55 million people) six-person meetings (both indoors and outdoors) are banned while bars must close at 10pm.
But as of Saturday, indoor meetings are now banned across the London area, and non-meal pubs have been closed. In Manchester and Liverpool, similar measures are being considered.
In Northern Ireland, pubs and restaurants closed Friday, October 16 for a month and school holidays have been extended.
“Caregivers need rest and decent wages, no bonuses”
► Cities cordoned off in Spain
After Madrid, three other cities in the region of Castile and Leon, Palencia, Leon and Salamanca are now in partial closure, in order to slow the progression of the pandemic. The measure prohibits leaving and entering the city, except for specific reasons such as going to work or seeking treatment. In Catalonia, bars and restaurants have been closed since October 15, for at least 15 days.
The regional government of Cantabria, in north-western Spain, has even just called its population, half a million inhabitants, to “Self-confine” in front of “The significant rebound in the number of cases”.
► In Germany, the courts are challenging certain measures
German Chancellor Angela Merkel solemnly asked, Saturday, October 17, her fellow citizens to reduce their social relations as much as possible, even encouraging them to stay at home.
→ Private life in Germany: mentalities shaken up in the face of the coronavirus
But the restriction measures are debated in the country. The Berlin Administrative Court on Friday, October 15, annulled the obligation imposed on establishments in the capital to close between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. In Baden-Wurtenberg, the courts have also challenged the stay bans for visitors from risk areas in Germany.
The government has nevertheless established a roadmap listing new restrictions, including nightly closings of bars and restaurants after a certain contamination threshold. Cities like Frankfurt or Cologne have already taken similar measures.