Australian PM calls for accelerated easing of virus restrictions



Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has called for the government of Victoria state to fast-track its plan to ease coronavirus restrictions.

Morrison told reporters on Monday that he wants Victoria to reopen more quickly than setout in a roadmap released by Premier Daniel Andrews on Sunday, reports Xinhua.

Under the plan the current stage-four lockdown in Melbourne will be extended until September 27. Restrictions will then be slowly eased over a period of two months if the number of new COVID-19 cases continues to decline.

“The plan that was outlined yesterday, I hope, is a worst-case scenario,” Morrison said on Monday.

“I see it as a starting point in terms of how this issue will be managed in the weeks and months ahead in Victoria.”

Morrison said that the plan could be accelerated if Victoria replicated the “gold standard” of contact tracing in New South Wales (NSW).

“I think the Victorian government has done a lot of work over the last four weeks, of necessity, clearly as well, to ensure that those systems have been significantly improved,” he said.

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