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Coronavirus: Lebanon imposes ‘total’ shutdown as cases increase

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Lebanon has imposed a "total" shutdown after experiencing a resurgence in reported coronavirus cases.

The curfew will start on the evening of 13 May and stay in place until the morning of 18 May.

The number of cases has risen to its highest point in more than a month after the was lockdown rolled back.

People "should stay home and avoid going out except for urgent cases", Information Minister Manal Abdel Samad said.

Prime Minister Hassan Diab said more than 100 new infections had been recorded in the past four days, accusing some of "negligence and lack of responsibility" for ignoring government guidelines on social distancing.

The country has 870 confirmed cases according to Johns Hopkins University, and 26 deaths due to the virus.

There has been a steady easing of lockdown measures in recent weeks, with shops reopening and curfew measures lifted on the condition that social distancing is maintained. Places of worship have also opened their doors for the first time in two months.

The upward trend in new cases has partly been attributed to infected expatriates arriving from overseas on repatriation flights.

On 7 May, 25 citizens who all boarded an inbound flight from Lagos, Nigeria, were found to be infected, the health ministry announced.

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