The rumor of a third lockdown in France has been spreading for a few days. Interviewed by "Le Parisien", Health Minister Olivier Véran said he was waiting "first to know the impact of curfew" before deciding on it.
He added: "We'll know next week. If it doesn't decrease, if variants start to spread everywhere, we'll make extra measures, of course. And it is called lockdown. If we see the virus starts to sharply spread, we close down."
Whatever rumors suggest, so far, even though another lockdown is considered as one of the hypotheses considered by the government, so far, nothing is official and the Health Minister still hopes curfew to be effective despite increasing incidence rates in France.
"Curfew shall work, we shall stay strong against variant and buy time. In the best-case scenario, we can make the epidemic pressure go down. If not, we won't wait for March to take action. We follow the evolution of curfew impact on a day-by-day basis. We won't wait for a new wave to make the right measures" Véran warns.
A few days earlier, he said: “The epidemic is not surging again, but this high plateau is not satisfactory”, this is the message conveyed by Olivier Véran to the French. Invited this Tuesday January 19, 2021 on France Inter, the Health Minister thinks “curfew results started to appear” over the past couple of days.
La 🇫🇷 enregistre environ 20 000 contaminations par jour depuis plusieurs semaines. Il n'y a pas de recrudescence de l'épidémie, mais ce plateau haut n'est pas satisfaisant.— Olivier Véran (@olivierveran) January 19, 2021
Le confinement à 18h commence à produire ses effets. Nous restons vigilants. #le79inter pic.twitter.com/Wtv5FsQlOs
Tweet reads: “[France] records 20,000 contaminations per day for several weeks. The epidemic is not surging again, but this high plateau is not satisfactory. Lockdown from 6 p.m. starts to become apparent. Let’s remain cautious”.
According to official data, there has been “-16% (new) cases in a week” in the 15 departments curfew has been pulled forward to 6 p.m. as the new year began. “The number of new diagnoses has been decreasing since January 2” in these areas the Minister confirms. Furthermore, for the record, restrictions forcing the French to self-isolate at home from 6 p.m. have been implemented in mainland France since Saturday January 16, 2021.
Yet, Olivier Véran insisted on the necessity to wait for another week before being able to see curfew results on a nationwide basis. So far, “the spread of the virus remains preoccupying” the minister says. To the question about a possible new lockdown, the Health Minister gave no answer. During the past interviews on the matter – that took place the past couple of weeks – neither government spokesman Gabriel Attal nor Olivier Véran wanted to “consider” a third lockdown.