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New Zealand’s lockdown extended as COVID-19 outbreak grows

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New Zealand’s lockdown has been extended to at least August 27 as the country recorded 41 new COVID-19 cases in the community on Monday.

This brings the total in the outbreak to 148 cases. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the primary source was traced to a returnee from Sydney, who arrived in Auckland on August 7.

After the first COVID-19 case in six months was detected in New Zealand’s most populous city, Auckland, the country entered a snap lockdown at 11:59 pm on August 17.

Auckland will remain in lockdown until at least August 31. Reasons to leave home include shopping for essential goods, obtaining medical care, getting tested and physical exercise within the neighborhood.

Earlier, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said genomic sequencing showed the original case is linked to the Delta outbreak in Australia’s New South Wales. Health officials are now investigating Managed Isolation and Quarantine (MIQ) and other border facilities.

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