Melbourne — and surrounding Victoria — will join Sydney in locking down. File photo
Australia's bid to quash a fast-spreading COVID-19 outbreak will see the country's second most populous state Victoria enter a five-day lockdown.
Premier Daniel Andrews said in a statement that “Melbourne returns to lockdown late on Thursday.”
“Melbourne — and surrounding Victoria — will join Sydney in locking down, bringing the total number of Australians under stay-at-home orders to around 12 million,” he added.
"You only get one chance to go hard and go fast. If you wait, if you hesitate, if you doubt, then you will always be looking back wishing you had done more earlier," Andrews told a televised news conference.
The state had recorded 18 new infections since an outbreak of the highly-contagious Delta variant began in recent days, Andrews added.
Other states and territories have recorded few or zero cases in recent weeks and are continuing to reopen their economies, but Prime Minister Scott Morrison told residents not to become complacent.
Despite a lockdown that began in early July, Melbourne has continued to report hundreds of new cases daily, and authorities said the city's residents would now face a curfew from 8 pm to 5 am for the next six weeks.
An Australian family residing in Dubai expressed its thanks and gratitude to the UAE for helping to reunite them in Dubai with their son, who was stuck in the Australian city of Sydney for nearly two months.
Australia has fared better than many countries in the pandemic, with around 7,920 cases, 104 deaths and fewer than 400 active cases, but the recent jump has stoked fears of a second wave of COVID-19, echoing concerns expressed in other countries.
The UAE’s annual literary extravaganza, the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature began on Wednesday with a starry mix of Hollywood celebrity, award-winning authors and experts leading the field on matters shaping the world. Across the week-long event, the festival will feature almost 300 sessions, ensuring there’s something for everyone, from live music and poetry performances to workshops, film screenings, and of course inspiring talks from some of the biggest names in literature.
The earthquake was recorded at 6:44 pm (10:44 GMT), near the Moncayo district in Davao de Oro province on the island of Mindanao.
Authorities are also probing the possibility that people inside the compound helped to coordinate the attack, the senior provincial police official told AFP on condition of anonymity.