Luxembourg closes bars, restaurants to mid-December

Luxembourg, a tiny country at the crossroads of France, Germany, and Belgium, is to close bars, cafés, restaurants, cinemas, and gyms until December 15 to curb surging COVID-19 infections.

Prime Minister Xavier Bettel on Monday announced the restrictions, which would bring Luxembourg into line with measures already imposed in neighbouring countries.

Parliament will vote on the restrictions on Wednesday, Bettel said. If adopted, the measures would take effect from Thursday.

Shops would remain open, with customers required to maintain social distancing and wear masks. 

Luxembourg has the highest per capita rate of Covid-19 infections in the European Union, according to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). A significant number of its cases are cross-border workers that sustain the wealthy nation's economy.

"The situation isn't catastrophic but we want to obtain a margin for manoeuvre, notably to ensure medium-term hospital care stays normal," Bettel said.

His government has already imposed an 11pm-to-6am curfew and a four-guest limit for households.

Health Minister Paulette Lenert said the infection rate, which the ECDC put at 1,279 cases per 100,000 inhabitants cumulatively over 14 days, had stabilised but was "at a too-high level".

Topics: Luxembourg , close , bars , COVID-19 , Xavier Bettel , European Union
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