Australians have been left feeling helpless after Italy announces a coronavirus lockdown
Italian Australians say they now feel utterly "helpless" after the European country this morning extended its lockdown measures.
There were already 16 million people under quarantine in the north of Italy – but that has been extended to the whole country, with 463 people dead.
9News.com.au spoke to a number of Australians in the Italian Sydney community of Leichardt and the overwhelming feeling was one of fear.
"My parents are very distressed. They are both over 60-years-old and for the first time in their life, they are really scared," Serena Rampino, an Italian living in Sydney, said.
"When the government started to close the city, they locked themselves inside the house and just went out to get groceries only when necessary," she said.
Italy's new emergency coronavirus measures also includes travel restrictions, causing Australians to cancel their flights to the country.
"My family and I had plans to head over to Italy in June but we've had to cancel everything after the coronavirus outbreak, it's just not something you can risk now," said Tiana Digenova, an Italian student.
"The worst part is being an outsider looking in. I can't imagine what everyone is going through. The fact we have limited contact and we are helpless makes it so much more saddening," she added.
Italian-born Australian Serena Rampino also had to put a halt on her travel plans to Italy, paying an extra $700 to get her plane tickets refunded.
Other Italian Australians have been attempting to get in touch with their families in lockdown but are not getting much information about their situations.
"I've been making more phone calls these past weeks than I have in the past year. We always have one eye on the phone hoping it'll ring," said Roberto Sergi, an Italian living in Australia.
"My nieces and nephews are scattered across North Italy, mostly Milan. I have been annoying them with non-stop calls but haven't got much back. I'm sure they are in the dark just like us," he said.
His wife, Raffo Sergi, added: "As an aunty and as a sister, there is more you want to do to help. That is something we can't possibly do right now and it is devastating."
Source: 9News https://www.9news.com.au/national/coronavirus-latest-italian-families-in-sydney-feel-helpless-amid-lockdown/9b748d61-3965-4932-ac44-23848f827dec