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France orders all restaurants, non-essential public places to close

 People take picture in front of the Eiffel tower closed after the French government banned all gatherings of over 100 people to limit the spread of the virus COVID-19, in Paris, Saturday, March 14, 2020. For most people, the new coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms. For some it can cause more severe illness, especially in older adults and people with existing health problems. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)
People take picture in front of the Eiffel tower closed after the French government banned all gatherings of over 100 people to limit the spread of the virus COVID-19, in Paris, Saturday, March 14, 2020. For most people, the new coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms. For some it can cause more severe illness, especially in older adults and people with existing health problems. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena) (KY3)
Published: Mar. 14, 2020 at 3:19 PM CDT
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French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe announced that France is shutting down all restaurants, cafes, cinemas and non-essential retail shops, starting Sunday, to combat the accelerated spread of the virus in the country.

He said grocery stores, pharmacies, banks and other public services including transport will be allowed to remain open.

French authorities had already shut down all schools, banned gatherings of more than 100 people and advised people to limit their social life. Philippe said these measures were “not well implemented.”

“We must show all together more discipline,” he added.

Philippe confirmed that nation-wide municipal elections will go ahead as planned on Sunday but with special measures to keep people at a safe distance and clean shared material.

Health authorities said more than 4,500 cases have been confirmed in France on Saturday, including 91 deaths.

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