ENTERTAINMENT

Coronavirus: Parisian bar and restaurant employees hold a sham burial due to blocking measures


The Paris anti-lockdown protesters took to the streets of the capital last night to hold a mock funeral marking the death of their industry.

On Monday, French authorities put Paris on maximum virus warning and issued orders to close all bars for 15 days as the number of Covid-19 cases in the capital continues to rise.

Recordings and images of the scene show bar and restaurant employees carrying a coffin silently wrapped in a black cloth along the street in the trendy district of the 11th arrondissement of Paris.

Other "funeral goers" can be seen raising smoke torches high in the air as the procession marches down the street.

The people carrying the coffin then place it on the floor before revealing the words "Bars, Restos, Clubs" scrawled on the side of the box.

Pictured: restaurant and bar workers host a mock funeral in Paris last night to mourn the death of their industry

Pictured: restaurant and bar staff host a mock funeral in Paris last night to mourn the death of their industry

Pictured: restaurant and bar staff host a mock funeral in Paris last night to mourn the death of their industry

Pictured: restaurant and bar staff host a mock funeral in Paris last night to mourn the death of their industry

Pictured: restaurant and bar staff host a mock funeral in Paris last night to mourn the death of their industry

Talel, manager of Le Petit Clou, a bar in the district, told actuParis that the lockdown measures were the end of his business.

"After a particularly difficult 2020 and three months of closure, we are again forced to close for at least 15 days," said Talel. "It is, in a way, the death of our business."

In addition to the funeral procession, Talel staged a suicide scene in the front window of his bar.

Pictures by Le Petit Clou show a noose on the ceiling and an overturned chair on the floor.

"These are things that can happen when a trader is broke and in debt," he said.

The theater protest organized by the Merchants Association of Oberkampf Village, Saint-Maur and Timbaud is supposed to call for a series of measures for the hotel industry in Paris from the government.

Pictured: restaurant and bar staff host a mock funeral in Paris last night to mourn the death of their industry

Pictured: restaurant and bar staff host a mock funeral in Paris last night to mourn the death of their industry

Pictured: restaurant and bar staff host a mock funeral in Paris last night to mourn the death of their industry

Pictured: restaurant and bar workers host a mock funeral in Paris last night to mourn the death of their industry

Pictured: restaurant and bar workers host a mock funeral in Paris last night to mourn the death of their industry

Pictured: restaurant and bar staff host a mock funeral in Paris last night to mourn the death of their industry

Pictured: restaurant and bar workers host a mock funeral in Paris last night to mourn the death of their industry

Pictured: restaurant and bar workers host a mock funeral in Paris last night to mourn the death of their industry

Claims include compensation for operating losses since March and tax exemption for 2020 until the end of the coronavirus crisis.

In France, ministers have already closed bars and imposed curfews on the country's two largest cities – Paris and Marseille.

Health Minister Olivier VĂ©ran issued a statement yesterday, announcing that Lyon, Lille, Grenoble and Saint-Etienne would reach maximum coronavirus alert from Saturday.

"Unfortunately, the health situation in France continues to deteriorate," Veran said at his weekly COVID-19 briefing.

Cities with maximum alert will also have to apply stricter health protocols in restaurants.

With school holidays approaching, Veran added that no travel restrictions were on the agenda and urged everyone to be very careful about family gatherings that are traditionally a feature of this vacation.

The Department of Health reported more than 18,000 new confirmed cases Thursday for the second straight day, well above the 7,500 per day level seen during the spring lockdown.

Pictured: restaurant and bar workers host a mock funeral in Paris last night to mourn the death of their industry

Pictured: restaurant and bar workers host a mock funeral in Paris last night to mourn the death of their industry

Nationwide, the number of intensive care nurses rose by 11 to 1,427. While this is well below the 7,148 high set on April 8 at the height of the crisis, the number of COVID patients in many metropolitan hospitals is more than 30 percent of the total.

Hospitals in the Paris region went into emergency mode on Thursday, canceling staff holidays and postponing non-essential surgeries as nearly half of all ICU patients were treated with coronavirus patients.

"Given the pressure on the beds in the emergency room … I asked the medical facilities in the area to activate their emergency plan to mobilize all resources," said Aurelien Rousseau, Paris Region Health Director, on his Twitter feed.

Two days ago, Rousseau said the number of COVID-19 patients in intensive care units had already risen to over 40 percent and urged citizens to further reduce their interactions. This is the only way to reduce infections and lower the pressure on the hospital system.

Elsewhere in Spain, the country may have tamed its second wave of coronavirus infections without closing bars or imposing tough local lockdowns like the ones seen in Paris.

A couple had lunch outside a bar in Madrid, Spain yesterday. Spain could have tamed its second wave of the virus after reversing its steep surge in infections

A couple had lunch outside a bar in Madrid, Spain yesterday. Spain could have tamed its second wave of the virus after reversing its steep surge in infections

Coronavirus cases are on the rise in much of Europe - although Spain, once the hardest hit country on the continent, is now seeing a decline in its infection rate

Coronavirus cases are on the rise across much of Europe – although Spain, once the hardest hit country on the continent, is now seeing a decline in its infection rate

The country saw a sharp surge in cases after starting non-essential stores reopening in mid-May, about two weeks before the UK, and having the highest infection rate in Europe in August and September.

But that trend has now reversed, with infections falling from 11,200 two weeks ago to an average of 9,500 this week, despite the country keeping bars and restaurants open and largely preventing local lockdowns – with travel bans that ministers imposed on Madrid down on today highest court in town.

The numbers suggest that the spread of infection can be contained without the need to close bars and restaurants, as is planned in the UK and France, and that a decline in measures already in place may be two weeks away.

Measures decided by Spain include curfews in bars and restaurants at 1 a.m., mandatory table service, strict social distancing, face masks both indoors and outdoors, and capacity restrictions in crowded public places such as beaches.

Those who live in Madrid will still be forced to adhere to some lockdown measures starting today, including a six-person limit for gatherings and restrictions on the capacity of restaurants, bars and shops and opening times.

However, these measures are not responsible for the falling numbers in Spain as they have not yet entered into force. The ministers also urge people to comply with travel bans even though they have been declared illegal.

European leaders will be watching Spain's declining totals as they grapple with infection containment while avoiding lockdowns as they devastated their economies earlier this year.

In Germany, Health Minister Jens Spahn also warned of a "worrying" increase in infections after the total daily number of cases in Germany rose by more than 40 percent overnight from 2,828 to 4,058.

"Hardly any other country in Europe has so far mastered the crisis so well," he said, warning people not to "gamble" what they have achieved while adhering to rules such as wearing masks, washing hands and social distancing.

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