SAWT BEIRUT INTERNATIONAL

| 22 September 2021, Wednesday |

France set to unveil new restrictions amid spike

PARIS: France is set to announce new coronavirus restrictions on Thursday, including a potential lockdown in the Paris region and in the north of the country, as the number of COVID-19 patients in intensive care units spikes.

“We will make the decisions we need to make,” French President Emmanuel Macron said on Wednesday while visiting the hospital of Poissy and Saint-Germain-en-Laye, west of Paris. He added measures will be “pragmatic, proportionated and targeted.”

Prime Minister Jean Castex is scheduled to detail new restrictions on Thursday.

The virus is rapidly spreading in the Paris region, where the rate of infection has reached over 420 per 100,000 inhabitants and ICUs are closed to saturation. France’s nationwide infection rate is about 250 per 100,000.

As during previous infection peaks, health authorities have organized transfers of critically ill patients to less-affected regions to ease some of the pressure on hospitals in Paris and in northern and southern France.

People in France have been under a 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. nationwide curfew for two months.