French coronavirus curfew produces eerie quiet on streets of Paris

PARIS (AP) — The streets of Paris and eight other French cities were deserted on Saturday night on the first day of the government-imposed 9 p.m. curfew that is scheduled to last for at least four weeks.

The measure was announced by French President Emmanuel Macron to curb the resurgent coronavirus as new infections peaked to over 30,000 a day. Macron said the curfews were needed to stop local hospitals from becoming overrun.

In France, nearly 20 million people are covered by the curfew and eerily deserted scenes were observed in Marseille, Lyon, Lille and Toulouse as well. The curfew runs until 6 a.m. daily. The country is deploying 12,000 extra police officers to enforce the new rules.

Many bar and restaurant owners have bristled at the order. An earlier months-long lockdown to combat the spread of coronavirus in the spring devastated the sector.

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