Italy extends state of emergency until October
Italy’s Prime Minister, Giuseppe Conte, has extended the country’s state of emergency until October, meaning he will continue to have the power to impose a lockdown and other safety measures without needing the approval of Parliament.
Conte told the Senate that the extension was “inevitable”, despite the infection rate falling significantly.
“Contagion has fallen, but the numbers show that the virus continues to circulate, giving rise to outbreaks at local level which have been identified and contained,” he said.
“The international situation remains worrying and what is happening in countries close to us obliges us to be watchful…this way the country is more secure.”
Matteo Salvini, leader of the far-right League, attacked the extension. He told reporters: “Keeping Italians terrorised, distant from each other and locked up is an attack on our democracy and economy.”
Salvini, who refused to wear a mask during a conference at the Senate on Monday, said the “emergency seemed to be over” and so the state of emergency didn’t need to be extended.
The country has reported 181 new infections today, bringing the total to 246,488, and 11 further deaths.