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Covid-19 Situation in Europe Forces Governments to Tighten Restrictions

October 14, 2020, 05.04 PM

GENEVA, - Europe is tightening Covid-19 restrictions as it clamps down on the second wave of coronavirus infections hitting the continent.

Governments across Europe are buckling under pressure as the number of newly confirmed Covid-19 cases in the continent reached their highest weekly level since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

The World Health Organization said Tuesday there were more than 700,000 new Covid-19 cases reported in Europe last week, a jump of 34 percent from the previous week.

Britain, France, Russia and Spain accounted for more than half of the new infections forcing some governments to reinstate coronavirus restrictions to curb the spread of infection.

Read also: Europe Unprepared as Second Wave of Infections and Pandemic Fatigue Strikes Continent

Europe’s massive uptick in new infections is partly the result of more testing, however, the WHO noted that Covid-19 deaths in the continent increased 16 percent last week from the previous week.

Although doctors are saying that recent coronavirus cases in Europe are in younger people, the novel virus could again start spreading widely among older people.

Thus, while the younger Europeans have milder symptoms, the continent’s older citizens typically have more serious illnesses.

Italy and France are restricting parties and putting limits on restaurants and bars as their governments respond to the second wave of coronavirus infections.

The Netherlands went further and ordered the closing of all bars and restaurants. And to discourage partying at home, it banned the sale of alcohol after 8pm.

Read also: The Netherlands Rethinks Coronavirus Guidelines on Face Masks as Cases Rise

The Czech Republic is closing all schools until November 2, while Latvia is ordering teenagers to switch to distance learning for a week.

Britain unveiled a three-tiered system for deciding what restrictions to impose, based on how severe the outbreak is in certain areas.

Those moves reflect a new approach to containing the virus among governments wary of hurting already fragile economies.

Officials are eager to avoid the total lockdowns they imposed in the spring that resulted in heavy job losses.


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