Daily US Times: From Wednesday, Australia’s Victora state capital Melbourne will exit lockdown after recording no new Covid-19 cases for the first time since June.
Victoria state was the epicenter of the country’s second wave, accounting for more than 90% of its 905 deaths.
Melbourne went into lockdown 111 days ago – enforcing travel restrictions, home confinement and closing stores and restaurants.
However, on Monday, city authorities said the city was ready to re-open.
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said: “With zero cases and so much testing over the weekend… we are able to say that now is the time to open up.”
Victoria saw cases surge to more than 700 per day in July but the severe stay-at-home rules and a curfew have brought the numbers down.
Mr Andrews praised the state’s six million residents, giving them credits for following the rules, staying the course, working with health guidelines.
From 28 October, people can freely leave their homes in Melbourne and all retail stores, cafes, restaurants and bars will re-open, with group limits of 10 patrons indoors
Household visits will be allowed, but there will be some conditions for that and it will be revealed on Tuesday
Outdoor gatherings of up to 10 people can also take place in the city, while weddings can have up 10 people and funerals up 20.
Mr Andrews said the Victoria state was well placed for a “Covid-normal Christmas,” but urged people to stay vigilant.
He said: “We need to be proud today and optimistic and confident, but we also need to be COVID-19 safe.”