ROME: Italy will be placed under nationwide lockdown for much of the Christmas and New Year holiday, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said on Friday, as the government looks to prevent a fresh surge in coronavirus cases.
The announcement ended days of indecision and wrangling within the coalition, which was split between those wanting a complete shutdown and those pressing for more limited action to help struggling businesses and to allow some family reunions.
Under the new rules, non-essential shops will be shuttered between Dec. 24-27, Dec. 31- Jan. 3 and Jan. 5-6. On those days, Italians will only be allowed to travel for work, health or emergency reasons.
Shops will be able to open between Dec. 28-30 and on Jan. 4 and people will be free to leave their houses at that time. However, throughout the holiday period, all bars and restaurants must remain closed.
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