Italy orders total lockdown

A masked beautician carries out treatments in a beauty salon, following the outbreak of coronavirus, in Rome
A masked beautician carries out treatments in a beauty salon, following the outbreak of coronavirus, in Rome, Italy March 9, 2020. REUTERS/Remo Casilli

Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte has extended coronavirus measures including a ban on public gatherings to the entire country.

The entire country will be placed under the lockdown conditions which have been imposed in the north of the country. The prime minister will sign the decree on Monday which will then come into effect on Tuesday.

According to Reuters, the Italian Prime Minister said that the decision was necessary to protect the most vulnerable citizens in the country.

In a press conference, Conte said that all sport events will be suspended.

Italy was the hardest hit European country outside of China since the outbreak of the coronavirus. It has infected a total of 9,172 people and claimed 463 lives.

In a televised address on Monday, Conte said that the best thing for the citizens of Italy was to stay at home.

All schools and universities remain close until 3 April.