A woman wearing a face mask walks past the Pyramid of Louvre Museum in Paris, France, Aug. 7, 2020.(Xinhua/Gao Jing)
Masks will be compulsory for people aged 11 and over in crowded areas in Paris and its surrounding areas, starting from Monday morning, the prefecture of the Ile-de-France region has announced.
"All the indicators show that since mid-July the virus is again circulating more actively in the region," stated the prefecture on Saturday, adding that this order will remain in place for one month.
The precise mapping of the areas will be disclosed on Sunday evening. In Paris, it will involve tourist sites, open markets, areas around stations, banks of the Seine and of Canal Saint-Martin and other places where social distancing is difficult, police of the French capital said in a Twitter message.
Earlier in the week, the City Hall of Paris had announced it was considering to order people to wear masks in busy outdoor public spaces after the central government gave local authorities the power to toughen up rule to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus during summer holidays.
Many French cities have already imposed mask wearing in outdoor places. Anyone who refuses to comply with the rule will pay a fine of 135 euros (159 U.S. dollars). Those who violate it more than three times within one month would face six months in prison.
On Friday, France reported 2,288 new coronavirus cases, the biggest daily spike since the end of April. Since May 9, when the French government started a gradual de-confinement, some 787 clusters have been detected, of which 288 remain active.