Australia’s Victoria state – epicentre of the nation’s second wave of COVID-19 infections – reported its lowest one-day rise in new cases in nearly two months, buoying hopes a lockdown of nearly 5 million people has contained spread of the virus.
Victoria said it detected 113 new cases in the past 24 hours, the lowest one-day rise since July 5. The state reported 149 infections on Wednesday.
Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews said the results mean officials are now plotting how to ease restrictions when the stringent lockdown of Australia’s second-most populous city Melbourne is scheduled to end in September.
“Hopefully soon we’ll see those numbers in double digits and we can have … a really clear discussion about what the back end of September looks like,” Andrews told reporters.
Strict lockdown measures have helped ease the daily rise of coronavirus infections in Victoria after the state hit a one-day high of more than 700 cases about three weeks ago.
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