Nicola Sturgeon extends Scotland’s coronavirus lockdown by three weeks

7 May 2020, 12:43

By Asher McShane

Nicola Sturgeon has said that Scotland's coronavirus lockdown must be "extended at this stage" for another three weeks.

Scotland's First Minister said the lockdown would be extended but with conditions that it could be varied during that period.

The conditions could be changed if there was sufficient evidence that it was safe to do so, she said.

Speaking at her daily briefing from the Scottish Government's headquarters in Edinburgh, she said: "Our assessment of the evidence leads me to the conclusion that the lockdown must be extended at this stage."

With reports that UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson is set to announce some easing of restrictions, Ms Sturgeon insisted she would "not be pressurised" into lifting measures prematurely.

She explained she did not want to lift restrictions too early, and risk a potential second spike of coronavirus.

"The decisions we take now are a matter of life and death and that is why they weigh so heavily," she added.

Ms Sturgeon said more information will be made available at 2pm today. It comes as Boris Johnson is preparing to deliver an update to the nation on measures to lift lockdown.

Nicola Sturgeon extended Scotland's lockdown but said more details will emerge later today
Nicola Sturgeon extended Scotland's lockdown but said more details will emerge later today. Picture: PA

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He is due to make an announcement at 7pm on Sunday.

A total of 1,762 patients have died in Scotland after testing positive for coronavirus, up by 59 from 1,703 on Wednesday.

Ms Sturgeon said 12,924 people have now tested positive for the virus in Scotland, up by 215 from 12,709 the day before.

There are 86 people in intensive care with coronavirus or coronavirus symptoms, a decrease of three on yesterday, she added.

There are 1,587 people in hospital with confirmed or suspected Covid-19, a decrease of 45.

Since March 5, 2,954 people who have tested positive for coronavirus have been able to leave hospital.

A Welsh Government spokesperson said: “The Welsh Cabinet met this morning to discuss the lockdown restrictions and will meet again this evening.

"It is crucially important that the people of Wales are informed clearly and accurately about what, if any, changes are made to the current stay-at-home restrictions.

“Some of the reporting in today’s newspapers is confusing and risks sending mixed messages to people across the UK.

“The First Minister of Wales will announce the outcome of the Cabinet's decision in due course."Our message for this bank holiday remains, stay home, protect the NHS, Save Lives."