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Morocco Tightens Measures as Covid Cases Rise

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AFP

Morocco

Moroccan authorities on Thursday slapped tight controls on movement in Casablanca and Marrakesh, the North African country's economic and tourist capitals, following a spike in coronavirus cases.

Several districts of the two cities were to be sealed off, and opening hours shortened for restaurants, coffeehouses, businesses and public parks.

Several beaches were closed in Casablanca, Morocco's largest city with 3.3 million inhabitants, following similar measures imposed on Tuesday near the capital Rabat.

Partial lockdowns were ordered Tuesday in Rabat and the port city of Tangiers, with armoured vehicles deployed on the streets and police manning checkpoints.

COVID CASES ON THE RISE

COVID-19 infections have been on the rise since the start of August and now exceed 1,000 new cases per day in the country of 35 million.

Thursday's tally was 1,325 new cases and 32 deaths, the latter up from 29 on Wednesday.

The north African country has confirmed a total of over 47,500 covid cases, including 775 deaths.

Health Minister Khalid Ait Taleb, who has come under fire on social media, acknowledges the sector needs another 62,000 paramedics and 30,000 medical staff.