The Scottish government has reintroduced lockdown rules in the city of Aberdeen, after a number of Covid-19 clusters were discovered.

Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said 54 cases had been reported as part of a cluster in the city, giving rise to fears of what she called a "significant outbreak" there.

"Our precautionary and careful judgement is that we need to take decisive action now ... in order to try to contain this outbreak and prevent further harm later on," Ms Sturgeon told reporters at her daily Covid-19 briefing.

"Acting now, we judge, gives us the time and the space to protect the ability of our young people to return to education."

Nicola Sturgeon said 54 cases had been reported as part of a cluster in the city

The government ordered all bars and restaurants to close by 5pm today and residents of the city have been told they cannot travel more than five miles (8km) from their homes.

The restrictions will be reviewed again in a week's time, when a decision on lifting them will be taken. But the first minister warned that the restrictions could continue beyond the seven-day period.

Schools in Scotland are due to reopen next week at the start of the new school year, and Ms Sturgeon said it was important to act locally now to ensure the outbreak is contained and ensure schools can reopen as planned.

There have been no new coronavirus deaths in Scotland, which has recorded 2,491 fatalities from Covid-19 during the pandemic, for 20 consecutive days.

In England, which has seen the highest death toll in Europe from the virus, several local lockdowns have been reintroduced since restrictions were first eased, ahead of Scotland, earlier in the summer.

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Extra police officers will be on the streets in Aberdeen to ensure residents comply with the reintroduced lockdown rules.

Police Scotland Deputy Chief Constable Will Kerr said: "It's really important that people follow the instructions and guidance from the Scottish Government.

"To support that, we will have additional patrols in Aberdeen, where local restrictions have been reintroduced.

"Our approach to these local restrictions will reflect the consistent approach taken by Police Scotland since the outset of this pandemic, and our officers will continue to engage, educate and encourage people to comply, as we all support the public health efforts to stop the spread of the virus."

France's daily case rate hits highest level since end of May

France's daily Covid-19 infections reached the highest in more than two months today, at 1,695, and the seven-day moving average stood above the 1,300 threshold for the first time since the end of April, when the country was still in lockdown.

The 1,222 daily average of cases seen since the beginning of August is now almost three times higher than June's 435 figure but still half April's 2,585, when the pandemic was in full swing.

France's main seaside resorts have made wearing masks in the streets mandatory and some have restricted access to the beaches in the wake of the uptick in new cases.

Paris authorities are expected to announce shortly that people will have to wear face masks along the banks of the Seine and around the trendy Canal Saint-Martin, as well as in some of the capital's other tourist hot spots.

However, after creeping up over the past two days, the number of patients in intensive care units in French hospitals for Covid-19 went down by four, to 384.

And the overall number of people hospitalised with the disease fell by 14 to 5,148, following a downward trend of two and a half months and suggesting the spike in cases has not yet translated into renewed strain on the health system.

The number of people in ICUs for the virus peaked at 7,148 on 8 April and overall hospitalisations at 32,292 on 14 April.

French health authorities reported nine additional deaths from the disease, bringing the total to 30,305, the seventh-highest in the world.  The number of confirmed cases stands at 194,029.

Additional reporting PA, Reuters