France is on the brink of a catastrophic second wave of coronavirus after 52,010 new infections were recorded on Sunday – the highest daily figure since the start of the health crisis. French residents are already living under some of the most severe measures, with daily curfews in place around the most infected areas, including Paris.
The fresh outbreak is not just confined to France as the pandemic continues to sweep across Europe, with a state of emergency declared in Spain and fresh curfews imposed on large parts of Italy.
Dr Eric Caumes, head of the infections and tropical diseases department at Paris’ Pitie-Salpetriere Hospital, has called for a second nationwide lockdown to suppress the virus in France.
In a damning assessment of the leadership of the French President, Dr Caumes insisted Mr Macron lost the battle in tackling a second wave of COVID-19 weeks ago.
Speaking to broadcaster Franceinfo following the huge surge in coronavirus cases, Dr Caumes said: “We lost control of the epidemic but that doesn’t date from yesterday.
“We lost control of the epidemic several weeks ago already.”
Medical experts advising the French Government have also warned the true figure of coronavirus infections could be double the official figure of 50,000.
Dr Jean-François Delfraissy, president of the scientific council that advises the French government on the virus, said the nation is facing a “very difficult, even critical situation.”
Dr Delfraissy said: “There probably are more than 50,000 new cases every day.
A nationwide curfew, where people are not allowed to leave their homes between 11pm and 6am, has been put in place until at least November 9.
In Italy, the Government announced bars and restaurants must close by 6pm.
This afternoon, the Italian Foreign Ministry also advised against travel to other European nations.