The popular Spanish Steps of the Italian capital stood empty Thursday morning, with just a few passers-by on the plaza underneath.
MILAN, Italy— Usually packed touristspots, shops and restaurants stood deserted in Italy on Thursday, one day after the authorities dramatically tightened a nationwide lockdown in a bid to curb coronavirus spread.
Milan, the financial capital of the world, was a ghost town with residents waking to an order to close all shops except supermarkets, grocery stores and pharmacies. Normally crowded with shoppers in a city centre, a handful of people mingled at a street market that had only one stand open.
Nearly all shops were closed in the city’s university area and men, most of them wearing masks, were lined up to get into a drug store.
Within, pharmacist Andrea De Leo, 26, said they had run out of masks but at the end of the week they were awaiting a new delivery.
De Leo said the town would persevere given the most severe restrictions since World War II.
“It is something that we get used to,” he said. “We’re going to fight.” Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte on Wednesday night announced the heightened restrictions. The 60-million nation is the worst-hit coronavirus in Europe.