Questions on exit
‘Too early’ to lift lockdown but hope for schools return
A deserted Grassmarket in Edinburgh (pic: Terry Murden)
Hopes that the lockdown would be reviewed on Monday have been dashed after Downing Street warned the peak of the outbreak might not come for another ten days.
UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab was expected to review the strategy on Monday, but Health Minister Edward Argar said the country was “nowhere near” ending the lockdown with too many people losing their lives.
Former Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said the lockdown may last another month.
However, ministers have hinted that schools in England could reopen after Easter if the situation stabilises, with claims they have little impact on the spread of the coronavirus.
School closures also mean some parents who could go to work are being forced to stay at home.
Should schools be reopened south of the border there will be pressure on First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to follow suit in Scotland.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak will present today’s briefing including an update on Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s condition. Mr Johnson is said to be ‘stable’ in hospital. His ‘persistent’ temperature is said to have dropped.
German Chancellor Merkel said that the country’s restrictions would remain in place until at least 19 April, however reports indicate the government has mapped out the country’s potential exit plan.
Measures include the mandatory wearing of masks in public, limits on gatherings, and tracing of infections.
Shops and schools would re-open, but with social-distancing practices implemented, and large events and private gatherings would still be banned.
Norway’s Prime Minister Erna Solberg announced yesterday that schools and universities will reopen on 27 April, while occupations that require close contact like hairdressers and physiotherapists will gradually be able to start up again.
The Norway government will keep restrictions on large sporting and cultural events through to 15 June, and the country continues to advise against leisure travel.