‘Be careful!’ Italy risks devastating second wave in Europe – officials panic

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Officials in Italy are concerned not enough attention is being paid to the possibility of a second wave of infections, as big crowds have gathered outside bars and clubs and many people have been failing to wear masks or respect social distancing rules.

Italy has been one of the worst affected countries in the world from COVID-19 with more than 32,000 deaths.

Beaches, restaurants and bars opened again on May 18 after a strict lockdown, which even banned people from going outdoors to exercise.

The government has allowed establishments to reopen as long as they enforce social distancing by separating tables and ensuring customers remain one metre apart.

History has warned today’s authorities that a second wave of COVID-19 is likely, particularly as lockdowns ease.

Italy’s Regional Affairs Minister Francesco Boccia told La Stampa newspaper: “Be careful, if it goes on like this we won’t be able to reopen regions.

“I understand the young people, but we cannot cancel the efforts made: at the end of the week the government will evaluate the situation based on the number of infections.

“We must not forget that we are still facing COVID-19 and so those who fuel a movida are betraying the sacrifices made by millions of Italians.”

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Mayor of Salerno, Vincenzo Napoli, has voiced his concern of the high number of crowds in the region.

He said: “There seems to have been some sort of psychological repression of what has happened so far, just like an emotional release.

“This is the worst that can happen.


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“Lowering your guard at this stage means returning to the terrifying action of the virus.”

The mayor of Pulsano, Francesco Lupoli, said: “The appeal to common sense hasn’t worked.”

Italians have been banned from travelling to other regions, but the government is set to lift this in June.

With regards to a second wave of the pandemic across Europe, Stefan de Keersmaecker, a spokesperson for the European Commission, has said that “member states should prepare for eventual second waves of infections by taking any opportunity to enhance the existing surveillance systems.”

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