France's National Assembly, in a select committee, voted at dawn on Sunday for an emergency bill to give the government special powers to combat the coronavirus pandemic .
The text of the new bill allows the government to restrict peoples freedom of movement and rule by decree to requisition certain goods and services, over a period of two months.
It comes the day after France recorded a spike in coronavirus-related deaths, 112 in one day, taking its total to 562 on Saturday. There have been 14,459 confirmed cases, the health ministry said in a statement.
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In concrete terms, the state of health emergency allows the prime minister, on the advice of the minister of health, to immediately implement a set of restrictive measures that apply throughout the country.
This includes the restrictions of movement and a potential ban on meetings and business.
Other measures allow the state to requisition any goods or services to combat the health crisis. This would include taxis to transport hospital staff.
It is specified in the bill, however, that measures taken under this state of health emergency cease as soon as they are no longer necessary.
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