Coffins fill up Italy’s churches and halls as the army wearing protective hazmat suits is brought in to move bodies out of the country’s worst affected region after the death toll soars by 969 in a single day

Saturday, March 28, 2020
By Paul Martin

Italy’s death toll increased by 969 yesterday to bring total to 9,134, up 11.9%
Coffins from Bergamo, Northern Italy, are being moved to less affected regions
European Union leaders could not agree action plan during midweek conference
Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte warned the EU could ‘lose its purpose’ with a strong response to the virus
Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?

28 March 2020

The Italian Army has been brought in to ferry coffins out of Bergamo, Northern Italy, as its morgue and its crematorium struggle to cope with the surge in fatalities from the coronavirus pandemic.

Harrowing photos from the town show officers wearing protective hazmat suits as they work to store bodies in churches and halls.

It comes as Italy’s Prime Minister today warned the European Union could ‘lose its purpose’ if it fails to respond strongly to coronavirus – after the country saw its worst spike in deaths to date.

Giuseppe Conte gave the stark statement as grim statistics revealed 969 more deaths yesterday, bringing the total to 9,134, up 11.9 per cent.

The two countries hardest-hit by the pandemic blocked Thursday’s statement because it did not go far enough.

The crux of the argument is about the extent to which the EU – facing what Italy views as an existential threat – should abandon its policy of keeping within tight budget constraints.

The bloc has already untied its purse strings in ways not seen since the 2008-2009 global financial crisis.

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