In a desperate bid to curb the spread of coronavirus epidemic, Poland and Denmark today announced that they will close their borders to foreign visitors and that all non-citizens will be banned from entering the countries.
The move comes as Denmark recorded its 800th case of the deadly illness on Friday, and Poland its 68th. Elsewhere in Europe, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Ukraine have closed their borders to foreigners, while a number of other countries – the latest among them Albania – have restricted travel to and from virus hotspots like Italy and Spain. Cyprus joined the list on Friday, denying entry to non-Europeans.
Germany and France, however, have stuck by their commitment to keep their borders open. French President Emmanuel Macron said on Thursday that he would not shut French borders, declaring that “Coronavirus has no passport.” Merkel, meanwhile, declined to join neighboring Austria in banning entry to Germany from Italy.
250 new deaths were recorded in Italy between Thursday and Friday, while France reported another 79 cases of infection. Globally, the Covid-19 pandemic has infected more than 143,000 people and killed more than 5,300, the majority in China.