Prime Minister Imran Khan, in his address to the nation on Tuesday, announced that the lockdown restrictions were to remain largely in place for another two weeks as country’s fight against Covid-19 continues. He said that it was owing to the restrictions that the country was able to contain the pandemic’s spread and keep it from reaching the projected numbers.

While the lockdown has been extended to April 30, restrictions have been eased for certain industries and businesses to lessen the economic fallout of the virus shutdowns, especially for the working classes. A number of low-risk industries have been allowed resumption of operations with the Prime Minister set to review the situation again before Ramzan.

The decision came on a day when coronavirus deaths in Pakistan crossed 100 and confirmed cases neared 6,000. The country has seen a sharp and steady spike in new Covid-19 cases but, as some officials believe, the situation is not as bad as feared earlier. However, experts point out that the next few weeks could pose a serious challenge.

Referring to the concerns that lifting of lockdown restrictions would increase the risk of local transmission, Imran Khan said that the govt will keep an eye on the situation and if cases are found in certain areas or sectors, they will be locked down again. He also said that some more industries would be reopened if the situation headed towards normalcy.

Here are the latest updates:

9.30 am

Pakistan records 68 more coronavirus recoveries

Another 68 people have recovered from Covid-19 in Pakistan, according to the government’s Covid portal.

This brings the total recoveries in the country to 1,446 so far.

8.00 am

Trump halts World Health Organization funding amid coronavirus pandemic

President Donald Trump said on Tuesday he would halt funding to the World Health Organization over its handling of the coronavirus pandemic while his administration reviews its response to the global crisis.

Trump told a White House news conference the WHO had “failed in its basic duty and it must be held accountable.” He said the group had promoted China’s “disinformation” about the virus that likely led to a wider outbreak of the virus than otherwise would have occurred.

The United States is the biggest overall donor to the Geneva-based WHO, contributing more than $400 million in 2019, roughly 15% of its budget.

The hold on funding was expected. Trump has been increasingly critical of the organization as the global health crisis has continued, and he has reacted angrily to criticism of his administration’s response.


2.00 am

Sindh govt eases some lockdown restrictions in view of NCC decision

Hours after the federal government announced National Coordination Committee’s decision to ease lockdown restrictions across the country, the Sindh government has decided to allow the resumption of certain economic activities, albeit with the condition that they follow precautionary measures to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus.

A notification issued to this effect by the Sindh home department late on Tuesday evening reflected some of the relief measures granted to certain industries in line with the NCC’s recommendations.


1.00 am

Punjab reports 4 more deaths, 89 new cases

At least 4 more coronavirus deaths and 89 new cases were reported in Punjab on Tuesday. The new numbers take Punjab’s death toll to 28 and its tally of confirmed cases to 2,945.

12.00 am

3 more deaths, 65 new cases reported in KP

KP reported three more Covid-19 deaths in Peshawar during the past 24 hours, in addition to 65 new cases of the virus.

The new deaths bring KP’s provincial toll to 38 while its number of confirmed cases has climbed to 865.

Many who tested positive for the virus on Tuesday are members of the Tableeghi Jamaat.

For our coronavirus coverage from April 14, click here

The post Coronavirus: Pakistan Lockdown Eases, But Is Extended By Two Weeks [Live Updates] appeared first on .

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