Lockdown New Zealand Extended After Infections in the Capital

New Zealand will remain in lockdown at least until Tuesday, after 11 new coronavirus infections were reported on Friday, including three in the capital Wellington.

 

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced a strict lockdown for the entire country last Tuesday due to one infection. The number of infections with the Delta variant of the coronavirus has now risen to 31, and there are more than a hundred different locations that corona patients have visited in recent weeks. It concerns schools, hospitals, a church, a nightclub and several restaurants. However, most infections took place in Auckland, the largest city in the country.

“We have to remain cautious,” Ardern said in a press conference on Friday. On Thursday, the prime minister announced that the outbreak’s origin had been found, which he called “encouraging news”. But to eliminate the highly contagious Delta variant from the community again, the stringent corona measures, which New Zealand have not had to deal with for more than a year, will remain in place for the time being.

New Zealanders are only allowed to leave their homes to go to the supermarket or hospital. Anyone who wants to recreate outdoors must stay in their own neighbourhood, and contact with other households is prohibited. “Don’t stop at the neighbours for a chat,” Ardern emphasized.

The lockdown has also been extended in the Australian state of New South Wales after 642 new infections were reported on Friday. Residents of the state, which also includes the metropolitan city of Sydney, must stay at home until at least the end of September.

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