01:19 GMT12 July 2020
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    Countries Ease Lockdown Measures While COVID-19 Cases Surpass 4 Mln Worldwide (197)
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    Earlier this month, First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon outlined a roadmap for the nation to start loosening the coronavirus restrictions.

    Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon on Sunday stated she agreed with scientists that any easing of the coronavirus lockdown must be very cautious.

    "I agree with the opinion that has been expressed over the weekend that we've got to be very cautious. This virus hasn't gone away, there is still a significant risk that it could run out of control again”, Sturgeon said.

    The day before, three members of the UK's government Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) warned that loosening lockdown restrictions could lead to a spike in new coronavirus cases.

    The warnings came after a Downing Street spokesperson admitted that the government had initiated the lifting of the lockdown restrictions before experts were able to drop the coronavirus threat level from “high”.

    Sturgeon's plan to exit the lockdown, proposed earlier in the month, stipulates that Scotland will be reopening in four stages over the next few months.

    During the first phase, Scots will be encouraged to go back to work if they can't work from home, and will also be allowed to use public outdoor spaces for recreational activities, such as sitting on a bench or sunbathing, as well as travelling short distances for leisure or exercise.

    In Phase 2, Scots will be allowed to gather outside in larger groups including family and friends, but still upholding social distancing. Small shops, pubs, places of worship, playgrounds, and sports courts, will also be allowed to reopen with social distancing and increased hygiene measures.

    Phase 3 will feel "closer to normal"; meetings will be allowed between members of more than two households, while larger retail and indoor office workplaces will be able to reopen too.

    Other lockdown restrictions, including on public transport, will be relaxed further during Phase 4.

    Topic:
    Countries Ease Lockdown Measures While COVID-19 Cases Surpass 4 Mln Worldwide (197)
    Tags:
    coronavirus, COVID-19, lockdown, Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon, U.K
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