Brussels bars close for a month after spike in virus cases

European lawmakers, wearing face masks to fight against the spread of the coronavirus, attend a plenary session at the European Parliament in Brussels, Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020. (Yves Herman/Pool Photo via AP)

BRUSSELS (AP) — Brussels on Wednesday decided at that all bars, dance halls and cafeterias will have to close for a month to counter a surge in coronavirus cases.

The measures in the Belgian capital went beyond nationwide restrictions that were announced only Tuesday, which ordered bars to close at 11 p.m. But because the pandemic is hitting the capital especially hard, the Brussels region said additional action was needed. The city hosts the European Union headquarters, which draws in people from 27 nations.

Belgian cases increased again over the week ending Oct. 3, spiking 57% compared to the previous week. The daily average over that period went from 1,570 to 2,466 new infections a day.

Belgium has had a large number of confirmed COVID-19 deaths — over 10,000 — for its population of only 11.6 million people.


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