Queensland's border with neighbouring Australian state of New South Wales could remain closed until at least September, the state's premier Annastacia Palaszczuk reportedly warned. It comes as two new COVID-19 cases were reported in Queensland on May 19 after women returning from abroad tested positive. Australia which is constantly moving forward to ease lockdown restrictions has been facing threat from imported cases.
Earlier this month, the roadmap of easing social distancing measures, released by Queensland officials, stated that the state’s boundaries could reopen by mid-July though, however, it was “subjected to further planning and review”. On May 19, the State premier asserted that she was concerned about "community transmissions" in the south of the border.
Speaking to an Australian media outlet, she said that things would look “more positive” towards September adding that the final decision would be made by the end of May. She further said that it wasn’t her personal decision but was based on “best health advice”. She also revealed that the decision to open state borders would be reviewed on a monthly basis.
This comes two days after country's Prime Minister Scott Morrison reportedly said that the citizens might be able to have an interstate holiday in just two months. After a National Cabinet meeting, Morrison reportedly said that as the borders fall internally, Australians can hopefully soon return to domestic holidays and move around the country more widely, and particularly with school holidays coming up again in July.
Meanwhile, the New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian hopes its not too far off with her immediate neighbour, Queensland. Gladys reportedly said that she is looking forwards to those state borders coming down. She added that if NSW demonstrates its ability in managing the virus and easing restrictions then she believes that other states will feel comfortable in taking down their borders. She said that as an international trip is not possible anytime soon, a domestic trip, however, could be perfect for those who need a break.
Image credits: AP