Coronavirus: masks are made mandatory in parts of Paris as infections increase

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Reuters

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Police say new order for masks comes amid spike in Paris cases


Wearing a face mask will be mandatory in busy areas of Paris from Monday due to an increase in coronavirus infections in and around the French capital.

Police said the order would apply to people aged 11 and over in “some heavily populated areas.”

The virus had been circulating more widely in the region since mid-July, they said. Face masks are already compulsory in closed public spaces.

Experts have warned that France could lose control of Covid-19 “at any time”.

Several cities, such as Nice and Lille, have introduced their own complementary ordinances making it compulsory to wear a mask in certain outdoor spaces.

The Parisian authorities have not yet detailed which areas will be affected by the new ordinance, which will come into force Monday at 8 a.m. (6 a.m. GMT).

Areas where masks are mandatory will be assessed regularly, they said.

In a statement on Saturday, authorities said the rate of positive tests for coronaviruses was 2.4% in the Paris region, against the national average of 1.6%.

They added that 400 people tested positive for the coronavirus every day in the region, with people between the ages of 20 and 30 being particularly affected.

Earlier this week, officials said they called for new measures on masks in the French capital.

“We will ask that [mask-wearing] become mandatory in crowded outdoor spaces where keeping a distance of one meter between people is difficult, ”said Anne Souyris, the deputy mayor in charge of health.

The new order comes after government science advisers warned on Tuesday that France could lose control of the virus “at any time.”

France reported 2,288 new coronavirus infections in its daily figures on Friday, marking a new high after the lockdown.

In total, the country has recorded more than 235,000 coronavirus cases and more than 30,000 deaths, according to data collected by Johns Hopkins University.

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