New Zealand on Friday extended pandemic restrictions by four days after which they will be eased slightly, although businesses and schools will remain shut and the biggest city Auckland will be locked down for longer.
New Zealand had been largely virus-free, barring a small number of cases in February, but that changed last week after an outbreak of the Delta coronavirus variant erupted, prompting Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern to order a nationwide lockdown.
The outbreak, which has so far infected nearly 350 people, may be reaching its peak, Ardern said at a news conference.
“We may be seeing the beginning of a plateau of cases,” Ardern said. “But caution is still required.”