He said he has to protect the economy, but he also said he would make a point of protecting older people, younger people, the vulnerable, the poorest members of society, and carers.

There is now an official stay-at-home order for France’s residents, with the exception of being allowed out for one hour a day to exercise, buy essentials, or seek medical attention.

Germany has also taken similar steps, opting for a circuit breaker style lockdown but with less harsh restrictions, which will be reviewed after two weeks.

While Germany has a lower infection rate than many other parts of Europe, the speed with which the virus has been spreading in recent weeks has alarmed officials, prompting swift action.

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