French government defends efforts against virus surge

France will close schools for at least three weeks and ban domestic travel for a month as vaccinations — and cases — increase.

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April 1, 2021 - 9:19 AM

On Thursday in Lyon, France, people put candles in their windows to support the medical staff during the Covid-19 coronavirus crisis. (Julien Reynaud/APS-Medias/Abaca Press/TNS) Photo by Julien Reynaud/APS-Medias/Abaca Press/TNS

PARIS (AP) — France’s prime minister today defended new nationwide measures to combat a resurgent coronavirus in France that include closing schools for at least three weeks and putting in place a month-long domestic travel ban, saying the government has acted “consistently and pragmatically.” 

The National Assembly, France’s lower house, is voting on the new measures this morning, which is expected to be marked by a massive boycott by opposition parties.

Jean-Luc Mélenchon of the leftist La France Insoumise party denounced the vote as a “bad April fool’s.” He has dismissed the measures as being half-baked, and urged Macron to increase vaccine supplies and adopt a more effective vaccine strategy.

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