Italian shops, hairdressers and restaurants finally threw open their doors as the country sped up efforts to bounce back from crisis after a 10-week lockdown.

Customers could once again sip their morning cappuccino at the bar, albeit well-spaced from other clients, and public Masses were allowed again in churches after bishops put pressure on the government to sanction religious services.

Almost 32,000 Italians have died of COVID-19 since the outbreak came to light on Feb. 21, the third-highest death toll in the world after the United States and Britain.
Italy was the first European country to impose nationwide restrictions in early March, only permitting an initial relaxation of the rules on May 4.

Monday marked a major step forward on the road to recovery, with unlimited travel allowed in individual regions, friends once again meeting up and restaurants able to serve as long as tables were at least 2 meters (6.5 ft) apart.

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