In Western Europe, restrictions due to the coronavirus are tightening after there are signs that the holiday season is causing an alarming increase in the number of infected, writes the British newspaper “Times”.
Authorities blamed the increase in cases of holidaymakers looking for entertainment at bars and beaches, as well as migrant workers who travel to find work and stay in crowded accommodation.
Authorities in Europe are imposing local quarantines, curfews and other measures in hopes of preventing a second wave of the infection and avoiding new general isolation, the paper said.
In the French resort of Kibron, access to beaches and parks was banned at night after the city, which registered its first case of coronavirus a week ago, said 54 people had become infected by the weekend. Locals blamed the tourists.
In Belgium, the government has imposed severe restrictions on social activities following a sharp increase in infections.
In Germany, Health Minister Jens Spahn announced that people returning from travel to countries considered high-risk, such as Turkey, would have to undergo mandatory testing next week.
In Austria, the alpine resort of Wolfgangsee has become an outbreak of the virus after 53 cases were confirmed over the weekend. The area is a popular destination for German tourists, and the situation has raised fears of a recurrence of the infection in the Austrian ski resort of Ischgl in March, when tourists from various European countries were infected.
Italy, where the epidemic was contained after a severe spring quarantine, reported new outbreaks, sometimes attributed to workers returning from Asia or Eastern Europe. Some illegal migrants arriving by sea from North Africa are also tested positive for coronavirus, which is a cause for concern in Sicily and southern Italy, where most incoming migrants are concentrated.
In Spain, the Autonomous Community of Catalonia has again imposed restrictions, closing nightclubs and urging people in Barcelona not to leave their homes except for important activities. However, regional leader Kim Tora insisted that “major tourist destinations such as the Costa Brava and the Costa Dorada remain unaffected and people can travel there safely.”
Portugal is also tightening restrictions. In 19 districts of the Lisbon region, people can only go out to buy important goods such as food or medicine, as well as to travel to and from work, the Times notes.
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