Italy under lockdown to contain Covid-19
By ECCT staff writers
Italian authorities have extended emergency measures to cover the entire country in an attempt to stop the spread of the 2019 novel coronavirus (Covid-19). Prime minister, Giuseppe Conte, announced the drastic measures at an evening press conference late on Monday, during which he told people to stay at home and banned all public gatherings.
Under the new rules, Italians will be able to travel to work and shop for food, and leave their houses for medical treatment, meaning businesses will be able to stay open. However, schools and universities will be closed across the country and public gatherings will be banned until 3 April. The emergency measures are being imposed after the number of cases jumped substantially over the past weekend, overtaking South Korea as the largest outbreak outside China.
Under the emergency measures, all public events will be banned, cinemas, theatres, gyms, discos and pubs closed, and funerals, weddings and sporting events cancelled. The measures will mean that Italy’s Serie A football championship will be suspended, along with all other sporting events. In addition, all citizens will have to sign a self-declared document to present to the police and the military to explain their movements. Anyone who is judged to be breaking the measures faces fines or imprisonment for three months.
The number of deaths from coronavirus in Italy rose from 366 to 463 on Monday, according to the head of the civil protection agency. The total number of cases in Italy rose by 24% to 9,172, and of those originally infected, 724 had fully recovered. A total of 733 people were in intensive care against a previous total of 650.