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Melbourne announces easing of restrictions after Australia's coronavirus epicenter records no new cases

October 26, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

Melbourne, the city at the epicenter of Australia's coronavirus epidemic, will move out of lockdown this week after the Victoria state health department on Sunday reported no new cases and no deaths due to the virus for the first time in more than four months.

(CNN)Melbourne, the city at the epicenter of Australia's coronavirus epidemic, will move out of lockdown this week after the Victoria state health department on Sunday reported no new cases and no deaths due to the virus for the first time in more than four months.

Announcing the relaxation of restrictions at a news conference on Monday, Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews said starting on Tuesday at 11:59 p. m. , Melbourne residents will be allowed to leave their homes and most businesses in the state can reopen with restrictions on the number of people.

The remarkable milestone of no new cases comes just months after Andrews declared a "state of disaster" to stem an outbreak that saw as many as 725 people in the state test positive for the virus in a single day.

As cases began skyrocketing this summer, Andrews put in place the type of strict anti-epidemic measures that governments in Western Europe and the United States have been hesitant to enact out of fear of damaging the economy and trampling on civil liberties.

Andrews declared the disaster in early August as Victoria was recording hundreds of cases per day, while the federal government closed the state's borders to non-essential travel.

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