New Zealand extends lockdown in Auckland as COVID-19 cases surge

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Monday extended a lockdown in New Zealand’s largest city, saying more time was needed to ensure a stubborn cluster of coronavirus infections was under control.

Auckland went into lockdown on August 12 after the virus infection was reported again, ending New Zealand’s record of 102 days without community transmission. Initially it reported four cases in a family and now it has grown to 101.

So far the source of the disease remains unknown.

Ardern said stay-at-home orders would remain in place across Auckland until at least late Sunday, instead of restrictions easing late Wednesday as originally planned.

“These extra four days are believed necessary to allow us to move down a level in Auckland, and stay down,” she said.