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Italy: Health ministers rule out border closures despite uptick in EU coronavirus cases

*JUMPCUTS AT SOURCE**NO CUTAWAYS AT SOURCE*
SOT, Jens Spahn, German Minister of Health (German): "[...] to isolate all the infected patients, to treat them clinically and above all to contain a further outbreak. We exchanged ideas with the health ministers of the neighboring countries of North Italy. We all share the conviction that travel restrictions or border closures would not be appropriate and applicable precautions at this point. It is more appropriate to decide on a case-by-case basis and this also applies for cases about whether a certain organization should take place or not: general precautions are also not to be applied about this. I am very grateful for the fact that we have decided to have regular contact not only by phone, but also on a personal basis. A virus doesn't stop at the border and we have seen it concretely in North Italy. That's a region of Europe, where various countries such as Switzerland, Austria, Slovenia, France and then also indirectly Germany have contact with each other and that’s why I am very grateful that we had this meeting today and exchanged ideas personally."
SOT, Jens Spahn, German Minister of Health (German): "We also decided together that we will share information in buses, trains and planes as well as in airports and train stations for the passengers from or within the effected regions. For example when someone has certain symptoms in one of these regions, this person can call a certain number in order to get the relevant support. We will also be sharing the corresponding informative material with these passengers."
SOT, Jens Spahn, German Minister of Health (German): "I now cannot say this to you from the top of my head, because it should of course be the number of a regionally responsible office. "
SOT, Olivier Veran, French Minister of Health (French): "Good evening, I really wanted to be here in Rome, at my counterpart's place — the Italian Minister of Health — alongside the ministers of health of the neighbouring countries, in order to make the point of the situation which remains — as I'm saying every day — which remains evolutionary at an international level. As neighbours, we must play the cooperation game. At my initiative, France's initiative, and alongside my counterparts, we have decided to adopt a common strategy out of responsibility. This strategy rests on different points. Firstly, we wish to tell Italy that we appreciate the efforts it is making to protect the Italian citizens and European citizens face to the threat posed by the Coronavirus. We agree on the need to take a common position to face this threat to a European level, and to level of neighbouring countries, as I said. Right now, we'd like to be really clear on the fact that there's no need of closing the borders between our countries. That would be disproportionate and ineffective. At this stage, we'd also like to say that it's not necessary to cancel a priori public events - cultural or sport events - but we agree on the possibility of assessing every situation according to the evaluations that we will receive from the health and scientific authorities, notably."
SCRIPT
German Minister of Health Jens Spahn ruled out the closure of borders in Europe as a means to prevent the further spreading of the deadly Coronavirus on European soil. Spahn made the comments while speaking to journalists in Rome on Tuesday.
"We all share the conviction that travel restrictions or border closures would not be appropriate and applicable precautions at this point. It is more appropriate to decide on a case-by-case basis and this also applies for cases about whether a certain organization should take place or not: general precautions are also not to be applied about this," said Spahn.
"A virus doesn't stop at the border and we have seen it concretely in North Italy. That's a region of Europe, where various countries such as Switzerland, Austria, Slovenia, France and then also indirectly Germany have contact with each other and that’s why I am very grateful that we had this meeting today and exchanged ideas personally," he said.
"We also decided together that we will share information in buses, trains and planes as well as in airports and train stations for the passengers from or within the effected regions. For example when someone has certain symptoms in one of these regions, this person can call a certain number in order to get the relevant support. We will also be sharing the corresponding informative material with these passengers," added Spahn.
Cases of the virus, also known as COVID-19, have surged in Italy in recent days, with 322 confirmed cases, the highest number in Europe, mainly in the densely populated northern regions of Lombardy and Veneto - where the cities of Milan and Venice are located respectively -and eleven deaths, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).