Australia curbs gatherings, locks down travelers, in new coronavirus measures

James Marshall
March 31, 2020

A security personnel stands on the mostly deserted steps of the Sydney Opera House, New South Wales in Australia March 26, 2020.

Australia is tightening its already-strict social distancing measures, using fines and threat of jail time time to enforce the new rules.

Australia's most populous states will restrict public gatherings to two people from midnight, state leaders said today, as part of a wave of new measures created to slow the spread of coronavirus which has infected more than 4,000 across the country.

More than 4200 cases of coronavirus have been detected across Australia and 19 people have died.

On Sunday Morrison also announced a six-month moratorium on landlords evicting renters.

About 90 rooms at state-government-controlled hotels are being used for people in quarantine.

"It is really important for us, at this stage of the virus, for us to maintain that level of control and contain it as much as possible".

"There's so many parts of the world where this (coronavirus) is running rampant and I think every returned traveller is a significant risk", Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews told a televised briefing.

The state's tally of virus cases grew to 69 on Monday night after three women tested positive for COVID-19.

Australia's state and federal leaders have formed an emergency Cabinet to hammer out the coronavirus response as numerous social containment measures require state-level enforcement.

Restrictions came into place in a number of states on Monday limiting the number of people in a social gathering to two and forcing people to remain in their homes unless they have a "reasonable excuse" to venture outside.

New South Wales and Victoria will fine people between A$1,000 (S$875) and A$1,600 for breaching the rules.

Amid concerns distressed assets could be snapped up by overseas buyers, Australia said today that all foreign investment proposals would be assessed by the relevant government agency during the duration of the crisis. We hope that we have succeeded by giving you the full details and information.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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