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More than 32,000 new infections reported: France has a partial lockdown policy due to exploding corona numbers

The infection process in France appears to have gotten out of hand: in Paris and eight other Corona hotspots, citizens are no longer allowed to leave their homes between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. France reported a new day record on Saturday evening with more than 32,000 new corona infections within one day. The number of corona deaths rose by 122 on Friday to a total of 33,303 since the outbreak of the pandemic. The new curfew is the toughest measure in France since the nationwide lockdown ended on May 11.

On the eve of the measure, which went into effect at midnight, there were still plenty of people in the capital. On Friday around 10 p.m., the terraces of the brasseries and restaurants that were still open on the Square of the Republic in Paris were still full. “We will enjoy it for as long as possible,” said a 19-year-old student, accompanied by four friends. “We go to the restaurant, tour the bars and take a short walk.”

Editions are reminiscent of spring in France

Prime Minister Jean Castex turned down exceptions for the cultural sector on Friday. “Everyone has to be home by 9 pm,” said Prime Minister Castex of the new curfew for the metropolitan areas of Paris, Marseille, Lyon, Lille, Rouen, Saint-Etienne, Grenoble, Toulouse and Montpellier. Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire said this would cost the economy less than a nationwide lockdown.

The Paris Ministry of the Interior published a form on Friday evening that everyone who has to go to the door during curfew must have with them. The following exceptions can be specified, among others: commuting, medical emergencies, care for family members or care for children or the way to the airport or train station for long journeys. Walking the dog is also allowed, but only within a kilometer of the apartment.

There is a threat of € 135 fine

The strict regulations are reminiscent of spring. At the time, there were very strict exit restrictions throughout France. Even then you were only allowed to go outside for a valid reason, for example to go shopping. Walks were limited in time and allowed only within a kilometer of the apartment. The people also had to document all of this with a form. Parks and beaches were then closed.

Those who fail to comply with the new restrictions will have to pay a fine of EUR 135 – repeat offenders may owe thousands of euros. 12,000 police officers are responsible for enforcing the rules.

The French Minister of Culture Roselyne Bachelot had previously identified exceptions for cinemas, theaters and concert halls as conceivable and thus raised hope. The cultural institutions in the affected cities now have to close at 9 p.m., as well as restaurants.

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Restaurant owners have widely criticized the measure. They had to close for weeks in the spring and are now complaining again about significant loss of income. “It is in the evening the death of the restaurants in Paris. In the capital people arrive at the restaurant at 9 pm, we do not eat with the chickens here. A very large majority of the establishments therefore come in the evening around 6 pm. Closing hours “said the president of the hotel and restaurant association Umih Île de France, Frank Delvau, to the newspaper” Le Figaro “.

“I see that as a life ban,” says a student

“I don’t see anyone at university anymore because all my courses are online; my dance class, which ends at 10 pm, is canceled and if you can’t go out in the evening … I see that as a life ban,” said the 22nd . -year-old student Coline of the Sorbonne of the newspaper “Le Parisien”.

A few hours before a curfew began, a court in Toulouse overturned a local scheme to contain corona infections. The administrative court in the southwestern French town rejected an order from authorities to close bars and restrict restaurants as too far away.

In Toulouse, the prefecture also ordered the closing of bars on October 12 and the restriction to groups of six people in restaurants. A number of industry representatives who feared the economic survival of their operations had been charged. The court now dismissed the restrictions as disproportionate, but the curfews imposed by the central government in Paris are appropriate to address the worsening corona situation.

Prime Minister Castex emphasized during the visit to the University Hospital Lille that the government wanted to help the hospitals that came under pressure again in the second corona wave. According to Castex, “nearly 40” percent of the intensive care beds at Lille University Hospital are occupied by corona patients, and even more in Paris. Many hospitals could reach their limits again at the end of October.

German travel warning for all of France since Saturday

A German travel warning “for all of France” will also go into effect on Saturday, as the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced. Only overseas territories such as New Caledonia and French Polynesia are not affected, but the Ministry of Foreign Affairs “strongly advises against” traveling here as well. The border area with Alsace, Lorraine and the administrative district of Champagne-Ardenne is also considered a risk area for the first time since mid-June, the Robert Koch Institute announced. This caused unrest in the region.

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“The borders will not be closed,” assured the affected French region of Grand Est. Baden-Württemberg, Saarland and Rhineland-Palatinate also declared that the borders would remain open. Daily life, work and study should not be “paralyzed by a complete lockdown”, said Prime Ministers Winfried Kretschmann (Greens), Tobias Hans (CDU) and Malu Dreyer (SPD). During the first Corona wave in the spring, Germany had largely closed the border with France.

According to the three Länder, cross-border commuters are allowed to move “within 24 hours in the border area” without restriction. The French do not have to pass a negative corona test or go into quarantine to shop in Germany. Exceptions of 72 hours are even planned for family reunions, doctor’s visits or compelling professional reasons, said the French parliamentarian Christophe Arend of the radio station France Bleu. In France there is no quarantine requirement for travelers from Germany. (AFP, dpa)

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