(BBC) – Coronavirus cases in France have nearly doubled in the past 24 hours as Prime Minister Jean Castex warned that the country had been going “the wrong way” for two weeks.
The health ministry reported 1,397 new infections of Covid-19 since Monday. Fourteen people have died.
A ban on meetings of more than 5,000 people has been extended to 30 October.
Mr Castex also asked local authorities to further extend the requirement to wear face masks in public.
“The epidemiological situation, which we are following very closely, is deteriorating: 2,000 new cases per day compared to 1,000 three weeks ago,” Mr Castex said at a press conference in Montpellier.
“About 25 new clusters are identified every day compared to five three weeks ago,” he added.
It is already compulsory to wear face coverings nationwide on public transport and in indoor spaces including shops and government offices.
Local authorities have the ability to impose mask-wearing and some have introduced it in outdoor spaces, including Paris tourist hot spots and the banks of the river Seine.
More than 30,000 people have already died from the disease in France, which experienced a significant wave of cases in March and April.