France will impose a nighttime curfew on nearly a third of the country’s 67 million people to fight the resurgence of a coronavirus, but a new country-wide lockdown is not being considered, said President Emmanuel Macron.
Macron announced the curfews, which will take effect from Saturday and run from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. the next morning, shortly after the government declared a new state of public health emergency.
The president said curfews would be imposed in the Paris region, Marseille, Toulouse, Montpellier and five other cities.
“We have to react,” Macron said in a television interview.
Macron said France had not lost control of the virus but added: “We are in a worrying situation”.
France reported 22,591 new cases of coronavirus on Wednesday, the third time in six days the daily tally has exceeded the 20,000 threshold.
The virus has killed more than 32,000 people in France.
The state of emergency gives officials more power to impose further restrictions.
The French government previously declared a state of public health emergency in March this year, as hospitalizations caused by the pandemic were nearing their peak.
At the time, authorities used their extra powers to order people to stay in their homes except for essential jobs, purchase food, or get an hour of daily exercise.
Australian Associated Press