London: European nations look to extend shutdown amid coronavirus pandemic.
The EU has introduced strict border controls. Travelers from outside are being turned away from airports and borders after the 27-country bloc imposed a 30-day ban to halt the spread of coronavirus.
Italy, had imposed a lockdown on March 12 till March 25, is set to extend its lockdown beyond the previously agreed timeline. The European nation has witnessed the second largest death toll in the world from novel virus – second only to China.
Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte stated, “The measures we have taken… must be extended beyond their original deadline.”
France too has announced to extend its 15-day lockdown. French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner said, “The 15-day period may be extended. If necessary, the government will re-conduct it.”
The European Central Bank (ECB) has launched an emergency €750bn ($820bn; £700bn) package to ease the impact of the pandemic.
World Health Organization has declared COVID-19 coronavirus as a ‘pandemic’, which has infected 207,000 people with 8,600 casualties world-wide.