COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) – The Sri Lankan government lifted a curfew on Sunday to curb the spread of the corona virus.
Curfew was first introduced on March 20 and was in effect 24 hours a day across the country for more than a month.
The government began to reduce curfews after health authorities said the virus was under control in the Indian Ocean. Since April, it was usually limited to nighttime.
The curfew was in effect from midnight to 4 a.m. on June 13.
Sri Lankan health officials say they have prevented a spread of the coronavirus in the community and new patients belong to two known clusters.
The country has reported 2,034 cases, including 11 deaths.
In other developments in the Asia-Pacific region:
– South Korea confirmed an additional 62 cases of the corona virus in a 24-hour period as the country continues to struggle with new clusters after relaxation of social distance rules. The additional cases reported on Sunday brought the total to 12,715 with 282 deaths. Officials said 40 of the new cases came from domestic infections, while the other 22 came from abroad. Twenty-six of the 40 domestic cases were detected in the densely populated metropolitan area of Seoul. South Korea has been struggling to suppress a spike in new cases since its rigid social distancing rules eased in early May. The new cases have been linked to night clubs, church services, a massive e-commerce warehouse, and low-income workers.
– China has reported 17 new cases, all but three of domestic broadcasts in Beijing, which have recently seen a spike in coronavirus infections. But authorities in the capital say that a campaign to run tests on hair and beauty salon workers across the city has so far found no positive cases, a further sign that the recent outbreak has been largely brought under control. No new deaths were reported on Sunday, leaving China’s reported total at 4,634 out of 83,500 confirmed cases. Tens of millions of Chinese traveled during the three-day Dragon Boat Festival that ended Saturday, but anti-crowding measures were in place across the country. Tourist sites had to limit visitor numbers to 30% of the capacity.
– The Australian state of Victoria has stepped up efforts to contain a spike in coronavirus cases by mandatory testing of all travelers returning from abroad. The state government said on Sunday that travelers in mandatory quarantine will be tested twice – on the third and eleventh days of their 14-day isolation. Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews said those who refuse to comply should remain in quarantine for another 10 days to ensure they do not pose a risk to the wider community. On Sunday, a total of 49 new cases of the coronavirus were recorded in Victoria, which have risen sharply in recent days. Australia’s most populous state, New South Wales, reported three new cases on Sunday, while Western Australia reported only one.
– Prime Minister Narendra Modi says India should focus on strengthening the economy as it exits the closing phase, even as coronavirus cases continue to rise. On Sunday, India reported another 19,906 confirmed cases, bringing the total to 528,859 with 16,095 deaths. Modi told a radio address that Indians should remain more vigilant during the post-lockdown period compared to the lockdown, and that only alertness can save them from the corona virus. He again urged people to wear a mask and observe social distance standards and other precautions or else endanger others, especially the elderly and children at home.
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