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New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern Ends All Pandemic Restrictions Outside Auckland

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern Ends All Pandemic Restrictions Outside Auckland

The easing rules come in to place as of 11:59 this evening

New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has announced the easing of coronavirus restrictions in all areas outside of Auckland.

Residents were able to meet and move freely with group gatherings originally increasing from 10 people to 100 but the new announcement means there is no longer a limit.

The restrictions will be eased everywhere but Auckland.

Restrictions were eased some time ago after the country went longer than three months without a single Covid-19 case, but the brakes were put back on when a fresh outbreak occurred in the main city of Auckland.

Speaking today (21 September), the PM explained that some restrictions would also be eased in Auckland but added that the city needs more time before all are lifted.

Speaking to reporters, Ardern said: "Our actions collectively have managed to get the virus under control. This was the centre of the outbreak and that's why that caution is needed here."

Jacinda Ardern.

As well as having limitless gatherings, residents outside Auckland will also be able to use public transport without having to wear a mask.

The changes will come into place as of 11.59pm this evening (21 September) as the country moves to 'Level 1', meaning a return to largely normal life.

It's fair to say that people online were pretty happy with the news.

One person wrote: "What does Level 1 mean again?

"I can go to the pub with all of my mates, I can go watch the rugby without restrictions, and I can again contemplate joining a gym to get fit but never actually go. Not because of germs but because of who I am as a person."

Meanwhile, in England coronavirus infections are doubling every seven days, according to Chief Scientific Advisor Sir Patrick Vallance.

If that were to continue, by the middle of October there could be 50,000 cases per day, leading to more than 200 deaths per day by mid-November.

Vallance said that despite low levels of immunity in the population, the 'vast majority of people' are 'still susceptible to infection', and provided estimates that eight percent of people have been infected.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: New Zealand, News, Coronavirus