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Coronavirus (COVID-19)

UK coronavirus live: Summer holidays to Europe in doubt as France and Poland lockdown amid third wave


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third wave of coronavirus has sparked new lockdowns in Europe as summer holidays abroad this summer look increasingly unlikely.

France and Poland have both introduced partial lockdowns and Germany is experiencing a surge in cases prompting Angela Merkel to warn the country will need to re-impose restrictions.

In Poland, shops, hotels and sporting facilities will be shut for three weeks.

Trains going to Brittany and Lyon, which are not affected by the new rules, were rammed and there were long traffic jams out of the city.

Some 21 million people in 16 areas of France have been placed into lockdown to combat surging case numbers.

Live updates

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Germany ‘likely’ to re-impose lockdown measures, says Merkel

As coronavirus cases continue to rise in Germany, Chancellor Angela Merkel has warned it is likely that the country will now need to apply an “emergency brake” and re-impose lockdown measures.

Ms Merkel said: “The situation is becoming very difficult.

“We have exponential growth…so it is good we had agreed on an emergency brake and unfortunately we will have to make use of this emergency brake.”

It comes as Germany said on Friday it was now classifying neighbouring Poland as high risk. This means that from Sunday anyone crossing the border from Poland must provide a negative coronavirus test.

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France enforces partial lockdown

France has enforced a partial lockdown which took effect from midnight on Friday.

The new restrictions allow people to exercise outdoors and non-essential businesses are shut, but schools remain open, along with hairdressers if they follow a “particular sanitary protocol”.

France has reported more than 4.2 million infections since the start of the outbreak, with nearly 92,000 Covid-related deaths, according to the data compiled by America’s Johns Hopkins University.

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Poland reintroduces partial lockdown as Covid-19 cases rise

Poland has reintroduced partial lockdowns as the country battles a sharp rise in Covid infections in recent weeks.

The three-week lockdown began on Saturday as non-essential shops, hotels, cultural and sporting facilities are closed for three weeks.

The country has the highest new daily rates of Covid cases since November.

Poland has had more than two million confirmed infections, and nearly 49,000 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins.

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Europe pushes to get vaccine drive back on track

Europe pushed to get its COVID-19 vaccination drive back on track on Friday after EU and British regulators said the benefits of AstraZeneca’s shot outweighed any risks and the World Health Organization gave its backing to it.

The end to the suspension of AstraZeneca shots by more than a dozen countries will now kick off a test of public confidence, both in the vaccine and regulators who are under unprecedented scrutiny as variants of the coronavirus spread and the global death toll climbs beyond 2.8 million.

At least 13 European countries stopped administering the shot after reports of a small number of blood disorders. More than 55 million people have received a vaccine from all manufacturers in the EU and the European Economic Area (EEA), which links 30 European countries.



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