France registers 10,593 new cases of Covid-19 in 24 hours as prime minister faces trial for viral policies

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The French prime minister faces a lawsuit over his handling of the coronavirus crisis as infections rose by more than 10,500 on Thursday.

France saw another record increase in Covid-19 cases, with the health ministry reporting 10,593 new confirmed cases in the past 24 hours, up from 9,784 on Wednesday.

The death toll increased by 45, bringing the total to 31,095.

It happened as a group of people who have recovered from the coronavirus and the families of Covid-19 patients sued Prime Minister Jean Castex for overseeing dangerous and contradictory management of the epidemic.

Lawyer Fabrice Di Vizio said he filed the lawsuit Thursday on behalf of the France Coronavirus Victims group before the Court of Justice of the Republic.

The tribunal received more than 90 legal complaints against ministers.

The France Coronavirus Victims group, which has 200 members, accuses Mr. Castex of not having “fought a disaster likely to create a danger to public safety”.

Members asked why face masks weren’t mandatory in offices before September 1 and asked why France had yet to allow rapid saliva testing for the virus.

Di Vizio told AFP: “This country is managed and not governed.”

If the court decides to continue the case and Mr Castex is convicted, he faces up to two years in prison and a fine of 30,000 euros (£ 27,000) if found guilty.

Last week, Mr Castex said testing times would be speeded up to allow for a million tests per week and the government would increase restrictions at Covid-19 hotspots.

The prime minister, who recently emerged from isolation after coming into contact with an infected person, said the situation was “clearly getting worse”.

“For the first time in many weeks, we are seeing a substantial increase in the number of people hospitalized,” he said on Friday.

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