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Australia's Northern Territory achieves final stage of easing coronavirus restrictions

Jun 05, 2020

Canberra (Australia), June 5: The Northern Territory (NT) with no active COVID-19 case since May has become Australia's first jurisdiction to reach the final step, or stage three of easing coronavirus restrictions.
From midday on Friday, cinemas, theaters, live music venues, nightclubs and beauty therapy and cosmetic services were allowed to open in the NT for the first time since restrictions were introduced.
Community sport has been given the green light to resume and two-hour time limits for patrons at restaurants, pubs and bars have been lifted.
Stage three is the final step in the plan to reopen the Australian economy by July announced by Prime Minister Scott Morrison in May.
The NT has been Australia's most successful jurisdiction in preventing the spread of COVID-19.
However, despite that success Chief Minister Michael Gunner ruled out establishing a "travel bubble" with other states, declaring that he would not consider opening the NT's borders until every other state was prepared to do so.
"We'll do it once and we'll do it right. I want to make the job for police as simple as possible when it comes to how you process moving across the borders, and it's just much easier to do all at once at the same time," he said on Friday.
"And to be honest, I reckon we're really close to that if you look at how it runs tracking so this is wait, see what happens and then make an informed decision for all, all people."
As of Friday afternoon there had been 7,247 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Australia, up from 7,240 on Thursday. All seven new cases were in Victoria and New South Wales.
Source: Xinhua News Agency