Italy Imposes Nationwide Restrictions in Attempt to Contain Coronavirus Spread

By Paul Riegler on 9 March 2020
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The Italian government extended quarantine measures to the entire country only two days after imposing a lockdown in the north.

The move is the most drastic step by any country to contain the new coronavirus and the new rules go into effect on Tuesday.  It comes as the situation in Italy continued to worsen: By Monday, 9,172 confirmed cases of the virus were recorded, with a death toll of 463, overtaking China’s recent figures.

As in the north, only travel to, from, and within the country is permitted if for work or health reasons. Almost all public assemblages from conferences to religious services to sporting events to funerals are prohibited, although churches will remain open, and the government is asking citizens to use vacation days and remain at home.

“I decided to adopt even stronger, stricter measures to be able to contain the spread of the virus as much as possible,” Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said at a news conference. “I’m aware of how serious this is, but I am forced to intervene even more decisively to protect all of us, and especially those who are more weak and vulnerable.”

In public, people must practice social distancing, coming no closer to one another than one meter (approximately 3’).

The new rules include a suspension of visits by inmates’ relatives, a move that was followed by violent protests in 27 jails around the country on Monday.  Six prisoners in Modena reportedly died of drug overdoses after prisoners took over the infirmary there and numerous injuries were reported.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

Accura News

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