The French government is preparing the country for a year of learning to live with the virus.
Rabat – The French government decided on a 2.5-month extension of their COVID-19 state of emergency, now set to end on July 24.
The proposal to go before Parliament on Monday states that the original plan to lift the state of emergency this month is “premature” and could result in an intensified outbreak of the virus.
“We are going to have to live with the virus for a while,” Interior Minister Christophe Castaner said.
The proposal includes a year-long “information system,” detailing ways to handle patients who have the virus and their networks, as well as quarantine conditions for travelers coming into the country.
France has been under a strict lockdown since March 24, requiring official authorization for anyone to leave their home. State of emergency violators face hefty fines and risk time in prison for multiple violations.
The country has been preparing for a gradual lift of their lockdown, planned for May 11.
French President Emmanuel Macron announced yesterday that “May 11 will not be the passage to normal life. There will be a recovery that will need to be reorganized.”
“There will be several phases and May 11 will be one of them,” Macron added. The new bill is expected to outline the upcoming phases.
France, one of the European countries most impacted by the pandemic, has seen 24,594 deaths from 167,305 confirmed cases.
Critics suggest the French government waited too long to respond to the outbreak, which recorded its first confirmed case on January 24.