In a Europe that is gradually starting to lose its grip this week, Italy, which has been cloistered for two months and is still convalescing from the covid-19 pandemic, is looking forward to Monday to see the partial suspension of restrictions.
“I want to take my elderly mother to the sea, can I?” Asked Pietro Garlanti, 53, wearing a mask and plastic gloves, when he bought the newspaper in a kiosk in Rome. “I hope the newspapers tell us what we can and cannot do.”
On Sunday morning, as in the past two months, the great historical avenues of central Rome were almost deserted. Only a few athletes broke the thunderous silence by jogging around the building or lovers of morning aerobics on the terraces.
Although many countries have begun to ease confinement or will do so this week, 4.6 billion human beings are still confined or subject to movement restrictions due to the covid-19 pandemic, which already leaves nearly 242,000 dead.
– “It’s a little confusing” –
Subjected to strict confinement since March 9, the Italians, who have been hit hard by the epidemic with nearly 29,000 deaths, particularly in northern Lombardy, are preparing for a gradual lifting of the measures starting Monday.
“Do not let your guard down. Phase II begins. We must be aware that this will be the beginning of an even greater challenge,” warned the head of the cell in charge of responding to the pandemic, Domenico Arcuri, but not before remembering that the ” Relative freedom “that the Italians are going to get can be frustrated in the event of an increase in infections.
Italians eagerly await the reopening of parks, the possibility of visiting the family or of meetings of a maximum of 10 people, limited travel within the commune of residence or the take-away sale in bars and restaurants.
However, the measures vary in the twenty regions of the country, contributing to the confusion. Calabria and Veneto have already eased restrictions and have authorized the reopening of bars and restaurants, but without a terrace.
Various sectors of the economy, such as construction, automobiles or luxury, resumed on April 27. However, the schools will not open until September.
Marghe Lodoli, mother of three children, says that “on the one hand we are very impatient of this reopening, we are already organizing the activities of the children outside with their grandparents, but on the other hand, it is a bit confusing, since the rules are not very clear and common sense may not be enough. “
France, also very affected by the pandemic with 24,760 deaths, plans to start the unconfinement on May 11, but in a very prudent way and at different rates, according to the regions. The government decided on Saturday to extend two months, until July 24, the state of sanitary emergency in force from March 24, considering that the suppression would be “premature”.
– Is the Bundesliga back? –
The 47 million Spaniards, locked up since mid-March, began to discover the happiness of returning to the streets on Saturday. In Madrid, Barcelona and in many other cities, many people went out to run, take the air, sometimes in a group. The country’s lack of confinement will take place in several phases until the end of June, while the number of daily deaths fell to 164, the lowest number since March 18.
The lifting of restrictions is already underway in Germany, where schools are gradually reopening in some regions on Monday. In Austria, Vienna’s shopping streets recovered from the hustle and bustle with the reopening of stores on Saturday, while in Scandinavian countries, where “barrier measures” and social distance remain in place, but people can take to the streets.
Another sign of normalization, the German Minister of the Interior and Sports was favorable on Sunday to resume the soccer league, the Bundesliga, in an interview with the Bild newspaper.
“I support the resumption in May,” said Horst Seehofer, three days before a meeting of the German authorities to decide on the matter, while the German League (DFL) is in favor of a resumption of the closed-door matches in mid-2015. may. The Bundesliga would be the first major European championship to take this step.
In Britain, the peak of the pandemic has been reached, according to Prime Minister Boris Jonhson, who has promised a deconfinition plan next week. With 28,131 deaths as of Saturday, the country is the second most affected in Europe, behind Italy.
At first, passengers of the Eurostar – the train that goes through a tunnel through the English channel – will have to wear masks, the company announced.
– “Hell” –
The pandemic has already caused nearly 242,000 deaths worldwide since it emerged in China in December, more than 85% of them in Europe and the United States, according to the latest balance sheet established by AFP based on official sources.
In the United States (66,000 dead), despite the terribly tragic daily balance sheets, some states are easing the restriction measures in order to relaunch the economy, which has suffered, as in the rest of the world, a severe blow from the pandemic.
Demonstrations for the “reopening of America” multiply in the country, where the virus strikes the 2.3 million detainees and security guards in US jails. “Right now it is hell,” summarizes an infected agent from Marion prison in the State of Ohio, where more than 80% of the 2,500 detainees and 175 employees have tested positive.
– The pandemic rages in Latin America –
While in Europe the cases fall, in other countries such as Russia (1,280 deceased) or Latin America, they are booming.
In the last 24 hours, Russia registered 10,633 cases, for which there are already 134,687 confirmed infections.
In Moscow alone, 2% of residents – more than 250,000 people – would be infected with covid-19, according to the mayor.
Latin America already exceeds 250,000 cases and is close to 15,000 deaths, particularly in Brazil (almost 100,000 cases and 7,000 deaths), Peru and Ecuador, which account for 98% of deaths in the region and 77% of diagnosed cases. .
More than a hundred municipalities in Ecuador, including Quito and Guayaquil, the focus of the pandemic in the country, will extend the confinement ordered by the government seven weeks ago to contain the spread of the coronavirus.
In the Brazilian city of Manaus, one of the most affected, the mayor asked the militant environmentalist Greta Thunberg to exercise “his influence” to help combat the covid-19 pandemic in his city, located in the heart of the Amazon.
“We need help. We must save the lives of the forest protectors, save them from the coronavirus. We are facing a disaster, a barbarism,” Arthur Virgilio Neto said on Twitter, in a video in English directed at the famous Swedish teenager.
burs-hba-af / zm
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