As French President Emmanuel Macron emerges from the Corona virus at a presidential retreat in Versailles, critics on Friday called for errors in his antivirus behavior, from close handshakes to frequent large group meals in the past. a week.
It is seen as a bad and unfair example to its own citizens, just as France sees a new increase in infections and doctors are warning families to be careful this holiday season – especially at the dinner table.
While Macron typically wears a mask and adheres to social distancing rules, and insists his virus strategy is driven by science, the 42-year-old president was captured in front of the camera in recent days in violation of France’s private guidelines.
The head of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, Angel Gurria, shook hands and hugged at a meeting on Monday. The two were masked, but Macron’s office acknowledged on Friday that the move was a “mistake”.
Last week, Macron spent two days in intense negotiations during the European Union summit in Brussels with leaders of 26 other European Union countries. Video excerpts released by the European Union showed the leaders spread out in a circle in a huge conference room – Macron and most of the other leaders were not masked.
Macron also hosted or participated in several large group meals in the days leading up to the positive test on Thursday, including with members of his centrist party and rival politicians, while the French are currently advised to avoid gatherings of more than six people. His office was calling attendees for meals, but he told some of the people sitting further away from the president that they were not considered in danger.
Presidential officials said on Friday that Macron had a fever, cough and fatigue. They did not provide details of his treatment. And he lives in the presidential residence at La Lantern in the former royal city of Versailles, in a grove under heavy police guard.
Macron’s positive test comes as French health authorities once again see a spike in infections and warn of more as French families prepare to meet together for Christmas and New Year celebrations. France reported 18,254 new infections on Thursday, and the death toll was just under 60,000.
The French Pasteur Institute released a study Friday indicating that meal times at home and in public places are a major source of pollution. Pasteur’s epidemiologist, Arnaud Fontane, said on Radio France-Inter on Friday, “We can see each other, we simply won’t be very much, and at critical moments in meals, there aren’t many people at the same table.”
The presidency said Macron took a test “as soon as the first symptoms appeared” on Thursday morning and would self-isolate for seven days, in line with recommendations of the national health authorities. Macron plans to continue working, and went ahead with a planned video address Thursday.
The French health minister indicated that Macron may have been infected at the European Union summit in Brussels last week, but Macron held multiple meetings in Paris as well.
France recorded its first case of the virus in Europe in January, but Macron’s government has been criticized for not having adequate masks or tests and for not counting the population quickly enough. A strict two-month lockdown has reduced infections, France put children back in school and their parents back to work.
But infections have spiked again this fall, so he announced a new, lighter lockdown in October aimed at easing the pressure on hospitals. Procedures were eased slightly this week, although restaurants, tourist sites, gyms and some other facilities remain closed.
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