Switzerland is one of the countries most affected by the coronavirus, with over 2,600 people testing positive and 19 deaths.
Here’s the latest:
- On Tuesday, the government issued a recommendation to all citizens to stay at home, especially the sick and the elderly.
- Health officials have said that the pace of increasing coronavirus cases is so rapid that they are finding it difficult to provide up to date figures.
- On Monday, the government declared an “extraordinary situation”external link, instituting a ban on all private and public events and closing bars, restaurants, sports and cultural spaces; only businesses providing essential goods – such as grocery stores, bakeries and pharmacies – remain open. Schools are closed nationwide. The measures are in force until April 19.
- The government has also decided to introduce border checks with Germany, France and Austria. Only Swiss citizens, Swiss residents and people traveling to Switzerland for business are allowed to enter the country. Foreign partners of Swiss citizens, who do not have a residence in the country, will also be denied entry.
- The Swiss government had previously imposed sweeping measures on March 13, including closing schools across the country and pledging CHF10 billion to help the economy.
- Up to 8,000 members of the military will be mobilised to help, representing the largest Swiss army mobilisation since World War II.
- The focus has now shifted to protecting the old and unwell. The health authorities no longer trace every Covid-19 case systematically.