As of this Monday, some sanitary restrictions are lifted in New Zealand, abandoning its strategy of eliminating coronavirus and instead “Will try to live together” with the virus while controlling its spread in Auckland. “With this outbreak and the Delta variant, returning to zero is incredibly difficult,” said the First minister Jacinta Ardern at a press conference.

The nation, located in the southwestern Pacific Ocean, was one of the few countries to cut coronavirus cases to zero last year, and it remained largely virus-free until an outbreak of the Delta variant in mid-August thwarted. efforts to end transmission.

“This is a change in strategy that we were always going to make over time. Our delta outbreak has accelerated this transition. The vaccines will support it, ”explained the official. Health authorities reported 29 new cases of coronavirus on Monday, bringing the total number of the current outbreak to 1,357.

Most of the infections were registered in Auckland, which has been in confinement for almost 50 days. Amid mounting pressure, Ardern has said his strategy was never to have zero cases, but to aggressively kill the virus. The premier announced that the strict lockdowns will end once 90% of the population has been immunized against the virus, Reuters reported.

“It is clear that a long period of strong restrictions has not led to zero cases. But okay… elimination was important because we had no vaccines. Now we have it. So we can start to change the way we do things, ”Ardern explained.

Auckland residents will be able to leave their homes to meet their loved ones outdoors starting Wednesday, with a limit of 10 people. Education in the first schools will return and people will also be able to travel for leisure, but shops, hotels and offices will remain closed.

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