French authorities have imposed a curfew since December 15 due to the epidemic situation. Prime Minister Jean Castex, in a televised address to the country, said that the restriction regime would be in effect from 20.00.
“We believe it is necessary to introduce more stringent curfews, 20.00,” said Castex. According to interior Minister Gerald Darmanin who also spoke, the curfew will be in effect until 06.00. Simultaneously, from December 15, the restriction on movement is lifted, and it becomes possible throughout the country.
The curfew will not be lifted in the country on New Year’s Eve. However, it will not be effective on Christmas night, from the evening of December 24. As before, Jean Castex repeated the population’s recommendation to limit the maximum number of participants in festive feasts, which should not exceed 6 people. Moreover, in the five days leading up to the holidays, the French are advised to “limit contact with other people.”
“The Christmas holidays are now connected with a very high risk of infection,” added Castex. The Prime Minister recalled “a sharp increase in the pace of the epidemic” in the United States after the Thanksgiving holiday. He attributed low winter temperatures to risk factors in France, citing data on lower rates of the epidemic in warmer regions of the country.
As reported, Castex, together with President and Emmanuel Macron and culture Minister Roselyne Bachelot, has been postponed for three weeks the date of commencement of the work of museums, theatres, and cinemas. They will open on January 7, “if the situation allows.” “It was difficult for us to make this decision,” the Prime Minister said.
Restrictive rules regarding the activities of religious centers, stadiums, and sports clubs will not be revised soon. At the same time, the Prime Minister assured that “all financial support measures for various institutions will be preserved.”
“I understand that it is difficult for the population to accept such restrictions, but the fight against the epidemic requires this,” the Prime Minister said. He noted that ” the second wave has not been defeated yet and the situation if necessary measures are not taken, maybe even worse in January.” “The indicators are now frozen at the same level, < … >, but the number of cases of infection is not decreasing and even slightly increasing in recent days,” Castex said.
He admitted that the figure of 5 thousand infected people, to which the authorities intended to improve the situation, was not reached. “We have not been able to overcome this second wave of the epidemic and reach the limit of 5,000 new daily infections,” Castex said.
The authorities recommend remote work. Universities do not get permission to resume working in classrooms — classes will be held online.