French Health Minister warns country can be locked down again

Olivier Veran (left) and French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner at a press conference after a cabinet meeting. (AP pic)

PARIS: France could reverse the relaxation of its nationwide lockdown if there was a resurgence of the new coronavirus outbreak, Health Minister Olivier Veran warned on Monday.

“If the virus were to resume its wild race, we would again take lockdown measures,” Veran told BFM television.

France, with the world’s fifth-highest death toll, has enforced an eight-week lockdown since March 17 to slow the spread of the new coronavirus. It is gradually lifting those restrictions from Monday.

Commenting on the recent discovery of new clusters of infection in the country, Veran said: “I am not surprised. It shows we are going to have to live with the virus. The more vigilant we are collectively, the fewer clusters we will have.”