Australia restricts meetings in Victoria amid new coronavirus outbreak

Sydney, Australia, May 25 (EFE).- The Australian authorities on Tuesday announced a cap on the number of people allowed to attend public and private meetings and made the use of masks mandatory in the southern Victoria state after a small Covid-19 outbreak.

The measures, which limit home visitors to five people and caps public gatherings at 30, came into effect on Tuesday and will continue until June 4 at least, Acting Premier James Merlino said.

So far, a total of nine cases have been detected during the latest outbreak, five of which were detected on Tuesday.

Authorities are probing the source of the outbreak and possible links between the infected.

The New Zealand government also announced the immediate suspension, for at least three days, of the travel bubble with Victoria.

However, the internal borders remain open in the state, which has been the worst hit region by Covid-19 in Australia due to a surge in infections in mid-2020.

For months, Australians have been living a normal life, interrupted only by brief and localized lockdowns imposed upon the detection of new outbreaks.

The Australian government, which has handled the pandemic well, has administered around 3.6 million doses of Pfizer or AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccines so far.

It plans to finish vaccinating its 25 million inhabitants by the end of the year.

Since the start of the pandemic, the country has recorded 30,021 infections, including 910 deaths, most of them caused by breaches in protocols at quarantine centers in the city of Melbourne in June last year. EFE


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