ROME, ITALY — (03-08-20) — Italy officially locks down more than 15 million members of their population in a bid to stop the Coronavirus breakout that has resulted in the death of 49 people over the last 24 hours.

Officials say that more than 4,600 cases have been reported in total within Italy’s borders. More than 5,800 cases of Coronavirus known as “Covid-19”, have been confirmed in Italy, after a massive increase of more than 1,200 cases reported within the last 24-hours.

As of March 7, 2020 – Two hundred and thirty-three people have died. Almost 100 countries are now responding to alarming outbreaks.

Early Sunday morning Italian prime minister Giuseppe Conte signed a decree enacting a forced quarantine for the region of Lombardy – home to more than 10 million people and the financial capital, Milan – and multiple other provinces, totalling around 16 million residents.

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Areas reporting inffections include the provinces of Venice, Modena, Parma, Piacenza, Reggio Emilia, Rimini, Pesaro and Urbino, Alessandria, Asti, Novara, Verbano Cusio Ossola, Vercelli, Padua, and Treviso.

The mandatory lock down decree includes the power to impose fines on anyone caught entering or leaving the province of Lombardy, the worst-affected region, until April 3, 2020.

The new executive decree signed prime minister Giuseppe Conte also provides for the banning of all public events, closing cinemas, theaters, gyms, discos and pubs.

Religious ceremonies such as funerals and weddings will also be prohibited, and leave for healthcare workers has been cancelled until further notice.

Rome is also prolonging the closure of schools across the country until at least April 3. Major sporting events including the Serie A football games will be played behind closed doors.

Article by: Paul Goldberg, Staff Writer

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