İrem UZUN -TDO- The European Commission is planning to ban all non-essential travel throughout Europe's Schengen free-travel zone as more countries close their borders to try to limit the spread of coronavirus. Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said she would ask leaders to implement the measures on Tuesday. "The less travel, the more we can contain the virus," she said.

EU countries were alluded to in French President Emmanuel Macron 's televised address to his nation on Monday. He said that "all trips between non-European countries and EU countries will be suspended". France is imposing nationwide restrictions on how far from their homes people can go and for what purpose as part of the country's strategy to stop the spread of the new coronavirus. French President Emmanuel Macron said that "movements will be very strongly reduced" for 15 days starting at midday Tuesday. He says residents will only be permitted to leave their homes for necessary trips such as going to work or the supermarket. Macron said in televised remarks that the government decided to order the restrictions because people haven't complied with earlier public health measures and "we are at war".

Von der Leyen said that long-term residents, family members of EU nationals and diplomats would be exempt as well as cross-border and healthcare workers and people transporting goods. The measures would be in place for at least 30 days. Citizens of non-Schengen EU member states will also be invited to apply the travel ban, including the UK. The comments came ahead a video-summit with EU leaders on Tuesday hosted by European Council chief Charles Michel.

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