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    Italy pushes coordinated reopening of European borders

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    Italy is pushing for a coordinated resumption of travel in Europe from 15 June, Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio said Monday evening.

    “For tourism, 15 June is a bit like the European D-Day”, Di Maio stated on Italian television channel Rai 1.

    Germany aspires to reopen on 15 June,” Di Maio pointed out, and “we are working on this together with Austria and other countries,” he added.

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    His statements come as France and Germany have called for the borders to be reopened as soon as possible.

    So far, announcements of plans to reopen borders have been made by individual European countries despite the European Commission calling for more consultation.

    Di Maio hopes to be able to present “homogeneous indications to tourists” in all regions of Italy so tourists can move freely from one region to another. “We must save what we can save of the summer to help our entrepreneurs,” he stressed.

    In theory, travel between regions in Italy will be allowed from 3 June, pending a final decision at the weekend, as the government remains concerned about the situation in Lombardy and Piedmont. As of Monday, these regions accounted for two-thirds of new coronavirus cases in the country.

    Since the beginning of the pandemic, 32,877 Italians have died of coronavirus, about half of them in Lombardy. The country currently still counts 55,300 positive cases.

    The country counted a total of 229,858 confirmed cases, and was the fourth most affected country in Europe as of Monday according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).

    The Brussels Times