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Coronavirus: quarter of Italy's population put in quarantine as virus reaches Washington DC - MW

Italy officially locked more than a quarter of the population in an effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus novel, when an outbreak of the disease hit Washington DC and a political conference involving Donald Trump and Mike Pence.

More than 5,800 Covid-19 cases have been confirmed in Italy, after an alarming increase of more than 1,200 over a 24-hour period. Two hundred thirty and three died. Nearly 100 countries are currently dealing with the disease.

At the beginning of Sunday time, Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte signed a mandatory quarantine decree on the area of ​​Bologna - home to more than 10 million people and the financial capital, Milan - and many other provinces, with a total of about 16 million people.

The affected provinces include Venice, Modena, Parma, Piacenza, Reggio Emilia, Rimini, Pesaro and Urbino, Alessandria, Asti, Novara, Verbano Cusio Ossola, Vercelli, Padua and Treviso.

The lockdown order includes the right to impose fines on anyone arrested in or out of the Bologna area, the worst affected area, until April 3. It provides for the banning of all public events, closing of cinemas, theaters, gyms, discos and pubs. Religious ceremonies such as funerals and weddings will also be banned and leave for medical staff will be canceled.

Rome is also extending the closure of schools across the country until at least April 3, while major sporting events, such as Serie A football matches, will be broadcast behind closed doors. private.

In the UK, the government is preparing its own emergency response measures, including emergency laws that allow people to switch jobs and volunteer to work in NHS or care homes, and to the courts. Use phone and video links.

The ban on people over 70 attending public events was also reviewed by the Cobra emergency committee, which met on Monday.

The escalation in Italy comes as the US struggles with its own reaction to the outbreak. In Washington DC, authorities reported a predictable positive test result in a man, in his 50s, unrelated to the virus.

He started exhibiting conditions in late February although he did not seem to have records of international travel or close contact with people known to have viruses, Mayor Muriel Bowser said. He is still in the hospital.

The U.S. Conservative Union also reported on Saturday that a participant in the annual conservative political action conference last month was diagnosed with Covid-19.

The organizers said the affected people had no interaction, with Trump or Pence and did not attend events in the main conference hall, held in Fort Washington, Maryland, just outside the District of Columbia.

Asked about developments later on Saturday, Trump told reporters in Florida that he was not interested and planned to continue to hold political protests.

The Australian government is also looking for people, including government employees, who have been in contact with two defense forces personnel since being diagnosed with the virus. Three people have died in the country, with over 70 confirmed cases. On Sunday, the Federal Health Minister called on people to avoid panic buying, which saw two people charged with fighting on toilet paper.

New infection rates in China, where the disease began, have slowed, but at least four people have been killed in a building collapse in the east of the country. Xinjia Express Hotel is being used as a quarantine center for people infected with the virus, state media said. On Sunday, rescuers continued to search for about 20 people still trapped in the rubble.

Friends of a prominent Chinese activist who has been detained for criticizing President Xi Jinping for handling the coronavirus epidemic say he is being charged with state security with a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison.

Xu Zhiyong, a former law lecturer and founder of the New Citizens Movement, was arrested by police on February 15 in a new crackdown on freedom of speech that ended with the coronavirus crisis.


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