New Zealand lifts lockdown on country’s largest city

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Wellington | New Zealand lifted the lockdown on the country’s largest city, Auckland on Friday, as authorities believe the source of COVID-19 contamination has been contained.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced that the lockdown will end on Sunday, a week after it went into effect.

This measure, which affected some 1.7 million inhabitants, was decided after a case of coronavirus whose origin could not be explained.

Eventually, the authorities discovered that the family members of the contagious person had not complied with the isolation measures. In particular, they continued to see friends who also tested positive for COVID-19.

The origin of this case being now known and the epidemic focus limited to 15 cases, the inhabitants of Auckland can once again leave their homes.

“This plan is in line with our careful and careful disposal strategy,” Ms. Arden told reporters.

New Zealand’s record in the fight against COVID-19 has been hailed abroad. In total, only 26 deaths have been attributed to the coronavirus in this country of five million inhabitants.

The prime minister acknowledged that Aucklanders, who suffered two lockdowns in February, were tired but urged them to abide by rules designed to curb any spread of the virus.

“We may not be in the devastating situation that much of the world finds itself in, but the elimination strategy can feel like a difficult endeavor,” Ms. Ardern acknowledged.

“It is quite normal to feel tired” and “it is difficult for everyone,” said the head of government before thanking the inhabitants.

If Auckland’s lockdown ends on Sunday, the number of people who can take part in a rally will be limited to 100 and masks will remain mandatory on public transport.

In the rest of the country, restrictions are at a minimum.