18 January 2022,   10:53
Italy and Spain ease restrictions while France extends

Italy and Spain have begun to ease coronavirus lockdown restrictions despite a decision by France and other governments to extend quarantine measures for at least another month.

Austria, the Czech Republic and Denmark also announced partial suspensions of restrictions on industrial and retail activity as governments seek to balance public health against reviving mothballed economies.

Italy - which has seen more than 20 000 Covid-19 deaths - allowed bookshops, stationery outlets and children"s clothes shops in some regions to reopen as of Tuesday. The forestry industry has also been allowed to resume operation.