PARIS, April 23 (Xinhua) - French President Emmanuel Macron said Wednesday during a visit to north-western France that the government will gradually ease movement restrictions from May 11 in different regions of the country.

Under the government's plan to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, cafes, restaurants, shops, cinemas, and theaters will remain closed, while festivals will be postponed to mid-July.

Meanwhile, schools will be reopened in several stages and with much smaller classes. But questions over protective equipment and hygiene protocol to be implemented in education establishments remain unanswered.

The number of people who have died from the coronavirus in France has climbed to 21,340, after a one-day increase of 544, higher than Tuesday's 531, director-general of health, Jerome Salomon, announced on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, 29,741 people tested positive for the coronavirus were hospitalized, down by 365 in the last 24 hours, consolidating a one-week slowdown.