Sweden's government is recommending wearing face masks on public transport throughout the rush hour, reversing its previously Covid guidance.

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It will likewise cut from the present eight to 4 per table the number of people sitting together in restaurants, and also ban alcohol sales after 20:00.


Elsewhere in Europe, Italy and Austria are the latest nations to be placed in lockdowns over the Christmas period.


Sweden, which has never implemented a full lockdown, has actually seen nearly 360,000 cases and also 8,000 deaths - many much more than the Scandinavian neighbours.


The country had previously been one of only a few nations not to introduce masks in public external of medical care settings.


On Thursday, swedish King Carl XVI Gustaf said the Scandinavian country "failed" to save lives with its relatively relaxed technique to the coronavirus outbreak.


Instead of relying on legitimate sanctions, Sweden appeals to citizens' sense of responsibility and also civic duty, and also issues only recommendations. There space no sanctions if they are ignored.


Media caption, Ros Atkins looks at one country that's to be an outlier because the start of the pandemic: Sweden
However, previously this week, schools throughout the Stockholm an ar were request to move to distance discovering for 13 to 15-year-olds for the first time as quickly as possible. The measure up was announced in solution to rising Covid-19 cases.


This come a mainly after a nationwide decision top top 7 December to move to remote finding out for those over 16.


And on Monday, brand-new nationwide social-distancing references for the Christmas period came into force, replacing comparable region-specific guidelines.


Sweden is not alone in tightening coronavirus restrictions. A number of European nations have done so ahead of Christmas following a surge of infections.


The Netherlands and also Germany have enforced lockdowns until January. Top top Friday, Italy adhered to suit, imposing a nationwide lockdown for much of the Christmas and brand-new Year period.


Italians will just be allowed to travel for work, health or emergency reasons in between 24-27 December, 31 December - 3 January, and 5-6 January.


In Austria, the government said ~ above Friday the nation would go into its 3rd lockdown after ~ Christmas. Native 26 December, non-essential shops will be shut and also movement outside houses restricted.


However, a mass experimentation programme in January will certainly give world the chance to finish their lockdown sooner. The government said those who test an adverse for the virus will certainly be allowed an ext freedoms.


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In France, president Emmanuel Macron remains in self-isolation in the official presidential residence at La Lanterne at Versailles after experimentation positive because that Covid-19. Grandfather Macron stated he was suffering from fatigue, headaches and also a dry cough.


Slovakia's prime Minister Igor Matovic, who attended an EU summit v Mr Macron critical week, said he had actually tested optimistic for coronavirus ~ above Friday.

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Several other European leaders who were additionally at the summit, consisting of the prime ministers that Belgium, Spain, Portugal and also Luxembourg, stated they would self-isolate.