Brussels | Europe reopens Monday, its internal borders, closed since several months to avoid the spread of the coronavirus, at a time when in China the emergence of dozens of new cases for the second consecutive day nourishes the fear of a new wave of the disease.
Germany, Belgium, France and Greece have decided to re-establish freedom of movement with all the countries of the european Union, believing to have mastered the pandemic.
Athens, whose economy is based in large part on tourism, goes even further and invites travellers from many regions outside the EU – such as Australia, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea, China.
In the island of Santorini and its post-card landscape, the population is watching for the return of tourists. “We are waiting desperately. We need them, if they don’t come how will we survive? “if impatient Michalis Drosos, in his store of memories.
Other countries in a hurry to save his tourist season, Croatia had opened its borders to european citizens as of Thursday, and Poland on Saturday. Spain has decided to move on to the 21st of June, instead of July 1st, the opening of its borders with all the countries of the european Union, with the exception of Portugal.
In France, where the coronavirus has made nearly 30 000 people dead, the Health minister, Olivier Véran estimated Monday that “the bulk of the epidemic is behind us”. Child care centres, schools and colleges will resume to full time from June 22.
Nine deaths were recorded at the hospital these last 24 hours in france, or the lowest number since the beginning of the balance sheets daily mid-march.
Fear of a rebound
Paris, the most visited city of Europe, finds it little by little, her normal face: the cafes and restaurants were allowed to reopen their rooms, after their terrace in early June. The tourists can again visit the iconic Eiffel Tower in a condition to climb the stairs.
First european country affected, the Italy suffers more than 34 000 people dead and has re-opened its borders on June 3, two new outbreaks have been detected in recent days in Rome.
China, where the COVID-19 has made its appearance in late 2019, has also experienced over the weekend a resurgence in the number of cases of contamination, centered around the market giant of Xinfadi, in the south of the capital so far been relatively spared by the epidemic.
Since Friday, Beijing has 75 new cases of contamination, and several cities in the country to advise their people to avoid visiting.
This rebound is combined with the persistence of the number of cases registered in the United States resulted in a drop in the stock markets of asia and europe Monday.
“The anxiety growing in the face of a second wave of COVID-19 that would be on the verge of hitting the global economy weighed on the mood of investors in early this week. A bond of new cases, China, the United States, is a source of increasing concern for the market that is concerned (…) a second containment”, said Ipek Ozkardeskaya, analyst at Swissquote Bank.
According to a report drawn up by AFP from official sources, the pandemic has claimed more than 430, 000 deaths and infected more than 7.85 million people in the world. And it continues to rage in Latin America, Iran and South Asia.
With a total of 43.332 deaths recorded Sunday, Brazil remains the second most grief-stricken by the COVID-19, behind the United States (115 729 dead).
“I believe that by August, God willing, we will see the efforts of the quarantine rewarded, if the people comply with” the containment, said Enrique Paris, the minister of Health of Chile which have been diagnosed with 7000 new cases in 24 hours.
The president of Guatemala, Alejandro Giammattei, has announced Sunday of increased restrictions on movement and maintained the curfew in force in the country.
The United States, which had listed 382 excess deaths from the virus on Sunday (the balance sheet daily the lowest in several weeks), continue, however, to save some 20 000 new cases of contamination every day.
The country most severely affected by the pandemic in the Middle East, Iran announced on Sunday more than 100 dead in 24 hours, bringing the national balance sheet 8.837 death.
Morgues are full
The pandemic has put a strain on the health systems throughout the world, particularly in India where, according to media reports, many patients die after having been refused by hospitals for lack of beds. More than 1000 new cases of contamination were recorded every day in New Delhi.
Ashwani Jain, a businessman of New Delhi, died in an ambulance, with his daughter, 20-year party in vain in search for a place in one of the hospitals of the metropolis. “It is equal that we live or we die”, she accused.
In this country, which has registered close to 9,000 dead, the bodies piled up in the morgues, because the staff of the cemeteries and crematoriums can’t keep up with the pace of death.
In neighboring Pakistan, the government has warned that the number of cases of coronavirus could double by the end of June and over one million at the end of July.