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27 April 2020updated 06 Oct 2020 9:45am

Johnson: Easing lockdown now would risk second peak

By Samuel Horti

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said easing the coronavirus lockdown too early would “throw away the sacrifice of the British people” and risk a second peak of the virus.

In his first address since returning to Downing Street following his coronavirus infection, Johnson could not say when restrictions would be lifted, or “how fast or slow” the government would act when it did start easing lockdown. But such decisions would be made with “maximum possible transparency”, he added.

He said he sympathised with business leaders concerned about the long-term damage of the lockdown on the UK economy, “but we must also recognise the risk of a second spike”. Now was a moment of “maximum risk”, he said.

“Clearly the government will be saying much more about this in the coming days,” he said. “I ask you to contain your impatience because I believe now we are coming to the end of the first phase of this conflict.”

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