Face masks now compulsory in Paris tourist hotspots amid second-wave fears

(COLOMBO, LANKAPUVATH) –Face masks became mandatory in tourist hotspots in Paris on Monday as French authorities imposed new measures to curb a rise in coronavirus infections.

The order covers busy outdoor areas in the French capital including the banks of the River Seine and the iconic Montmartre area in Paris’s far north – although other renowned tourist hotspots such as the Eiffel Tower, the Arc de Triomphe and Champs-Élyseés were not listed. Anybody aged 11 faces a €135 ($159) fine if caught without a mask where one is required.

The requirement came as France along with much of Western Europe swelters in a heatwave, with temperatures soaring above 35 degrees Celsius (95 F).

France is one of several European countries to have seen a spike in new Covid-19 infections over recent weeks, prompting fears of a second wave. It reported 2,288 new infections last Friday, a new post-lockdown high, with the seven-day moving average at 1,486, a level unseen since late April.

People have been required to wear face masks in all enclosed public spaces in France since July 21.

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