Italy on Saturday reported 111 more fatalities from the novel coronavirus, bringing the death toll to 33,340, as regions prepare to reopen their borders starting June 3.
The slowing trend in the number of deaths registered over the past week indicates that the peak of the crisis has been left behind.
Total active infections also continued to fall, decreasing by 2,484 and placing the total at 43,691.
Meanwhile, recoveries continued to climb, surging to 155,633, as more patients left intensive care, easing pressure on Italy’s strained healthcare system.
The northern Lombardy region remains the epicenter of the pandemic in the country, with fatalities at 16,079 — almost half of the total.
The government late on Friday confirmed that the last restrictions on movement between regions would be lifted on June 3 amid the falling rate of contagion.
The different levels of contagion had sparked a dispute between the worst-hit northern regions — especially Lombardy and Piedmont — and their southern counterparts, which have been less affected by the virus and rely heavily on tourism.
Some regional governors had also raised the idea of imposing a so-called “sanitary passport” for Italians hoping to travel across the country for the holiday period.
Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, however, on Friday confirmed the possibility for citizens to move freely in the country and the already-announced reopening of Italian borders for all member nations of the Schengen area.
Commenting this week’s contagion numbers, Italian Health Minister Roberto Speranza said there were “no data that justify further closings.”
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