French media suggested authorities were set to impose draconian restrictions on movement from Wednesday this week, quoting two reliable sources close to government. The strict measures will involve a prohibition on all movements outside the home except for one shopping trip each day. The sources said police and the army will be mobilised to enforce the rules and a curfew will be imposed from 6pm. They said the lockdown will last a minimum of five weeks.
On Saturday, French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe ordered all restaurants, bars and cinemas to close and urged citizens to minimise their non-essential movements.
But on Sunday, people mingled in parks, river banks and public spaces from Paris to Marseille, causing concern among senior health officials that the public was not heeding warnings.
Far-right leader Marine Le Pen, who called for border closures early on in the outbreak in Europe, said a confinement order was necessary.
Mr Macron is scheduled to make a live televised address to the nation at 7pm as speculation mounts that France is considering new measures to deal with the coronavirus outbreak.
He is due to convene a top-level government meeting on the issue prior to the broadcast.
Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo is set to announce the closure of the city’s parks and gardens which were still very crowded on yesterday despite government appeals for people to observe “social distancing”.
Mr Macron earlier condemned unilateral border control measures taken by some European Union countries in a bid to control the coronavirus outbreak.
He hit out after Germany decided to temporarily introduce border controls on frontiers with Austria, Switzerland, France, Luxembourg and Denmark from today in an attempt to curb the spread of coronavirus.