France has replaced its second national lockdown with a night curfew.
(BBC) – People will not be allowed out the house between 20:00 and 06:00 without an authorisation form.
Christmas Eve will be exempt, but the rule will stay in place for New Year’s Eve. Bars and restaurants are to remain closed until at least 20 January.
The number of people in France who have died from coronavirus infections rose by 790 on Tuesday to a total of 59,072.
People in France are no longer required to print or download an official justification for leaving their homes during the day.
But with daily infection rates more than double the 5,000-a-day target, a night curfew is being imposed and spot checks will be implemented.
Neighbouring Germany is introducing a hard Christmas lockdown on Wednesday after the number of infections there hit record levels.
Non-essential shops will close across the country, as will schools, with children to be cared for at home wherever possible.
Restaurants, bars and leisure centres have already been shut in Germany since November.
Chancellor Angela Merkel has blamed Christmas shopping for a “considerable” rise in social contacts.
The new lockdown will run from 16 December to 10 January, but this will be relaxed from 24 to 26 December when one household will be able to invite a maximum of four close family members from other households.
Elsewhere, a five-week lockdown in the Netherlands is the strictest set of measures announced in the country since the pandemic began.
Non-essential shops, cinemas, hairdressers and gyms have all closed and schools will follow suit on Wednesday. People have also been told to refrain from booking non-essential travel abroad until mid-March.
But restrictions will be eased slightly for three days over Christmas, when Dutch households are allowed three instead of two guests.
In the UK, London enters England’s highest tier of lockdown rules on Wednesday. Pubs and restaurants must close, except for takeaway and delivery, and indoor entertainment venues such as theatres, bowling alleys and cinemas must remain shut.
Meanwhile, Italy’s daily death toll is still close to 500 and the government is considering a further tightening of measures over Christmas.
The exact details are unclear, but a new lockdown could come into place between Christmas night and New Year. Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte described the potential lockdown as a “new squeeze”.