By Giada Zampano
ROME (AA) - Italy on Thursday reported 70 more fatalities from the novel coronavirus, bringing the death toll to 33,142, as regions started fighting over the possibility for citizens living in the worst-hit regions to go on vacation in other areas of the country.
The low increase in deaths registered on Thursday confirms the slowing trend in the virus outbreak, showing that the peak of the crisis has been left behind.
The tally of active infections on Thursday fell further, by 3,010, placing the total at 47,986.
Meanwhile, recoveries continued to climb, surging above 150,000, as more patients left intensive care, easing pressure on Italy's strained health care system.
The northern Lombardy region remains the epicenter of the pandemic, with victims rising to 15,974, almost half of the total.
The different levels of contagion across Italy sparked a fight between the worst-hit northern regions – especially Lombardy – and the southern regions, which were less hit by the virus and mainly rely on tourism.
Some regional governors raised the idea of imposing a sort of “sanitary passport” to Italian citizens willing to travel across the country, based on the risks of contagion.
The idea – which would discriminate residents in the areas with the higher rate of contagion – was blasted by Italy’s Minister for Regional Affairs Francesco Boccia on Thursday.
Boccia called the idea “unconstitutional,” saying if scientists rule out the possibility of sanitary passports then they make no sense.
Italy will lift restrictions on citizens’ mobility among regions on June 3, but it’s still unclear if that will also be applicable for regions with high contagion rates.