Melbourne: Australia's Victoria state extends COVID-19 lockdown in Melbourne

SYDNEY:  In a bid to contain the latest virus outbreak,  Health authorities in the Australian state of Victoria extended a lockdown in the capital of Melbourne as the latest outbreak of corona active cases rose to 60 by Wednesday. The lockdown, imposed on May 27 after the state reported its first locally acquired coronavirus cases, had been scheduled to end Thursday night. It will now end on June 10.

In announcing the changes, Acting Premier James Merlino said the extended lockdown will give the authorities a full 14 days, one full cycle of the virus, to make sure they understand how and where this mutation is moving.

"If we let this thing run its course, it will explode, we've got to run this to ground because if we don't, people will die." The health authorities were also very concerned since they thought the current outbreak is related to a more infectious variant strain detected in India, the Kappa variant, which could make people become infected after brief encounters with strangers.

The state reported six new locally acquired cases on Wednesday, versus nine a day earlier, taking the total infections in the latest outbreak to 60.

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