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France & Germany announce lockdowns after spike in COVID cases

Paris: President Emmanuel Macron of France and German chancellor Angela Merkel on Wednesday announced lockdowns in France and Germany after a second wave of coronavirus infections swept Europe.

France will go into a nationwide lockdown starting from Friday with just schools and essential businesses staying open until Dec. 1.

“I know the weariness and this feeling of a day with no end that is overcoming all of us,” Emmanuel Macron, said stated on Wednesday.

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“We must stick together and remain united, and not give in to the poison of division. This period is hard precisely because it is testing our resilience and our unity,’ he added.’

Germany recorded 14,964 new cases across the country in the past few days, taking the total since the start of the outbreak to 4,49,275.

Meanwhile, France reported 523 virus-related deaths in 24 hours on Tuesday, the highest daily tally since April, bringing its overall death toll to 35,541.

Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel says German officials have agreed to a four-week shutdown of restaurants, bars, cinemas, theaters and other leisure facilities in a bid to curb a sharp rise in coronavirus infections.

Angela Merkel and the country’s 16 state governors, who are responsible for imposing and easing restrictions, agreed on the partial lockdown in a videoconference on Wednesday.

It is set to take effecton Monday and last until the end of November.

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