New Zealand has reported three new locally acquired COVID-19 cases in Auckland, putting the country’s largest city on a three-day lockdown

Auckland will go on alert level 3 from 11:59 p.m. local time on Sunday, the rest of New Zealand on alert level 2

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern unveiled the changes at an evening media conference with Ashley Bloomfield, the country’s Director General for Health

Ms. Ardern announced that the town’s schools will remain open to children of parents who have to work, otherwise students will be asked to stay at home

Previously, New Zealand’s COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said genome tests were being carried out to see if the Auckland family’s infection was linked to highly infectious variants

“Our system has taken action, we are gathering all the facts asap,” said Hipkins

As a precaution, food and beverages are being suspended on Air New Zealand domestic flights

Ms Ardern, who urged Aucklanders to “stay home,” said the alert levels would be reviewed within 24 hours as her government continued testing

New Zealand, which had been free of infection for more than two months prior to the January fall, is slated to begin on Jan. February introduce vaccines for its five million residents

Health officials are still working to find out how the family got infected with the virus and “if COVID-19 could be present in the community or whether this is the beginning of a possible transmission chain “

The woman from the infected family is an employee at LSG Sky Chefs, where she mainly works in the laundry

Australian Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly said green zone flights from New Zealand would not change

“We feel at the moment that the risk is very low. But of course we will and we have looked at what these exposure locations are in New Zealand and we will look at that for anyone coming across the border from New Zealand “he said

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World News – AU – Auckland will be banned after New Zealand reported three new COVID-19 cases