New Zealand extends state of emergency to stop spread of COVID-19

New Zealand extends state of emergency to stop spread of COVID-19

Wellington New Zealand COVID-19
The normally busy central business district (CBD) stands deserted after the Level 4 lockdown came into force, in Wellington on Mar 26, 2020. (Photo: Reuters)

WELLINGTON: New Zealand is extending the state of national emergency for a further seven days to help stop the spread of COVID-19, the Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said in a statement on Tuesday (Mar 31).

The initial declaration on Mar 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. All non-essential services, schools and offices have been ordered to be shut for a month.

"Extending the State of National Emergency ensures we have all the resources, support and powers we need to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in our communities," Henare said.

New Zealand, with a population of about five million, has more than 550 confirmed COVID-19 cases, one of them fatal.

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Source: Reuters

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