NZ lifts COVID-19 restrictions in its largest city

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New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinta Ardern announced that all remaining restrictions in Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city, have been lifted.

This came after no locally transmitted cases of coronavirus were reported for the past two weeks in the city.

The NZ prime minister ordered a seven-day lockdown late February this year on Auckland after a cabinet meeting, where it put the city of 1.7 million on Alert Level Three.

Under Alert Level Three, public venues such as playgrounds, libraries and gyms are closed while the holding of public events are prohibited. However, supermarkets and groceries, pharmacies, gasoline stations and other essential establishments and business are allowed to remain open.

With the downgrading of Auckland to Alert Level One together with the rest of the country, Ardern said it means there will be no more restrictions on public gatherings or activities.

So far, the country’s swift actions and implementation of public health measures, together with contact tracing, border control and compulsory quarantine directives for travelers, have made New Zealand a global gold standard when it comes to effectively combating the spread of the virus.

New Zealand reported only about 2,000 cases, with 26 COVID-19-related deaths, and has started its own national vaccination program last month, with the hopes of providing COVID-19 jabs to its entire population by yearend.

(Photo credit: Reuters.com)

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