Flights will be organized over the next seven days to allow New Zealanders stranded in Australia to return home. “Come home while you still can,” New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern told New Zealanders in Australia.
They are to be quarantined for two weeks upon their return. Depending on the Australian state they have visited, they may self-isolate or need to self-isolate in a government hotel.
“It’s not an easy decision”
“It’s not an easy decision to make,” said Ardern. “But the coronavirus has changed and so we have to change too.” The travel bubble was watched with interest around the world, which produced some beautiful images a few months ago as New Zealanders and Australians could kiss each other again:
Ardern said she spoke with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison this morning and “hopes to reopen the bubble at some point.” “However, this is only possible if it is safe,” Ardern said.
Australia is currently experiencing a resurgence of the coronavirus. A record 136 new infections were reported in the state of New South Wales today. The state has been strictly locked down for several weeks, now 14 million of the 25 million Australians are forced to stay at home.
Excuse the Australian Prime Minister
Morrison apologized yesterday for the low vaccination coverage in Australia. Only 11% of Australians are fully vaccinated against the virus. “I’m sorry we weren’t able to meet the goals we were hoping for at the start of the year,” said Morrison. “Some things are under our control, some are not.”
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