France’s cumulative number of confirmed Covid-19 cases since the outbreak of the pandemic rose to 3,251,160 after 26,362 people tested positive for the virus in one day, official figures showed on Wednesday.

Another 357 people had lost their lives to the virus, bringing the death toll to 77,595, data posted on the government website showed, Xinhua news agency reported.

The number of hospitalized patients has fallen by 116 within a day to 27,955, while those who need life support inched down by 3 to 3,277, occupying 63 percent of the country’s total 5,100 resuscitation beds.

“What indicates these figures is neither lull nor explosion,” said government spokesperson Gabriel Attal at a weekly briefing. “We are on a high plateau but more or less stable.”

Attal told reporters “the situation remains fragile” but it “is in our hands … Confinement is not inevitable and it is our collective efforts that will allow us to avoid it.”

Some 1,682,951 people in France have been vaccinated, including 140,140 who have received two doses, the Health Ministry said on Wednesday.

Last Friday, the French government decided against a new lockdown, but it tightened border controls, ordered closure of large shopping malls to reduce people contacts and intensified police patrols to enforce curfew.

A night-time ban on people’s movement, in force since mid-December, was brought forward by two hours in the French territory on January 16 to reduce social mixing.

–IANS

int/

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