Italy’s government is considering a lockdown of the northern Lombardy region and 11 neighboring provinces to stem the spread of the new coronavirus in the area, the Wall Street Journal reports. Some 10 million people live in the region, which includes Milan. The WSJ says a draft decree of the plan by the Italian Prime Minister’s office, requires people living in Lombardy and 11 surrounding provinces to “absolutely avoid any movement into and out of the areas.”
Anyone violating the lockdown could be subject to a fine or jail time, and police and possibly the country’s army could be brought in to enforce the terms. If the quarantine is approved, it would go into effect on Sunday, and last until April 3rd, according to the New York Times. The draft decree instructs people to avoid moving within the quarantined areas other than for work obligations and emergencies.
Italy has been hard-hit by the coronavirus outbreak, with 5,883 cases as of Saturday. The WSJ reports 233 people have died in Italy from COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus. The country has already restricted public events, and ordered schools closed, but the decree would be the largest lockdown in Italy so far.