Left Menu
Development News Edition

Australia's government squabbles with states over easing restrictions as virus cases decline

The federal government is now struggling to persuade states to relax restrictions in order to get the economy moving, especially after Victoria suffered a second wave of infections last month. On Thursday, federal Health Minister Greg Hunt said Victoria - the epicentre of the country's COVID-19 outbreak - should consider lifting a night curfew, just days after the state kept the curfew among other tough measures extended until Sept.

Reuters | Updated: 10-09-2020 12:49 IST | Created: 10-09-2020 12:49 IST
Australia's government squabbles with states over easing restrictions as virus cases decline

Australia's conservative government clashed with state lawmakers on Thursday over how fast to relax social distancing restrictions, as the number of new COVID-19 cases showed a steady decline. Australia in March created a national cabinet which includes federal, state and territory leaders to coordinate measures to stop the disease spreading, closing international and domestic borders, suspending schools and closing businesses.

The steps taken have helped Australia record far fewer COVID-19 infections and deaths than many other developed nations, and the divisions in the national cabinet are emerging at time when the infection rate is coming down. The federal government is now struggling to persuade states to relax restrictions in order to get the economy moving, especially after Victoria suffered a second wave of infections last month.

On Thursday, federal Health Minister Greg Hunt said Victoria - the epicentre of the country's COVID-19 outbreak - should consider lifting a night curfew, just days after the state kept the curfew among other tough measures extended until Sept. 28. And Queenland's state premier snapped back at Prime Minister Scott Morrison, after he chided the state for refusing to let a woman from a virus-free part of the country attend the funeral of her father.

"To use the tragedy of this personal family is disgusting," Queensland state Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk told state lawmakers in Brisbane. "I will not be bullied nor will I be intimidated by the prime minister of this country."

Australia on Thursday reported 58 new cases in the past 24 hours, down on the 76 infections detected on Wednesday. Victoria accounted for the bulk of the cases, with 51 cases, well down on the more than 700 infections recorded in one day in early August.

Home to one-quarter of Australia's 25 million population, Victoria accounts for about 75% of the country's more than 26,000 COVID-19 cases and 90% of its 788 deaths.


TRENDING

OPINION / BLOG / INTERVIEW

New farm bills in India: Focusing on farms or farmers?

... ...

Kenya’s COVID-19 response: Chaos amid lack of information

Confusing numbers and scanty information on how effective curfews and lockdowns have been in breaking transmission have amplified coordination and planning challenges in Kenyas response to COVID-19. Without accurate data, it is impossible t...

Farkhad Akhmedov: Calculating the price of impunity from the law

In insistences such as the battle over the Luna, Akhmedov has resorted to extreme legal machinations to subvert the High Courts decision and keep his assets from being seized. ...

Guinea’s elections hearken back to the autocracy and violence of its past

... ...

Videos

Latest News

US: Russian hackers targeting state, local networks

US officials said Thursday that Russian hackers have targeted the networks of dozens of state and local governments in the United States in recent days, stealing data from at least two servers. The warning, less than two weeks before the el...

France halts Engie's U.S. LNG deal amid trade, environment disputes

The French government asked power group Engie to hold off on signing a multibillion-dollar U.S. liquefied natural gas import contract on concerns over the deals environmental implications, a source familiar with the matter said. The interve...

Entertainment News Roundup: Borat bounces back just ahead of U.S. elections; Paul McCartney to release solo album in December and more

Following is a summary of current entertainment news briefs.Borat bounces back just ahead of U.S. electionsIn 2006, he shocked the world with his scathing cultural satire of the United States in Borat. Now British comedian Sacha Baron Cohen...

FDA approves first COVID-19 drug: antiviral remdesivir

US regulators on Thursday approved the first drug to treat COVID-19 remdesivir, an antiviral medicine given through an IV for patients needing hospitalization. The drug, which California-based Gilead Sciences Inc. is calling Veklury, cut th...

Give Feedback