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Asia Today: Melbourne eases lockdown as cases decline

Last Updated Oct 17, 2020 at 7:18 pm PDT

An elderly Hindu offers prayers at the Vindhyavasini temple in Mirzapur in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, Saturday, Oct. 17, 2020. Health officials have warned about the potential for the coronavirus to spread during the upcoming religious festival season, which is marked by huge gatherings in temples and shopping districts. (AP Photo/Rajesh Kumar Singh)

MELBOURNE, Australia — Australia’s second-largest city, Melbourne, has loosened lockdown restrictions as new and active COVID-19 continue to decline.

From midnight Sunday, Melbourne residents will no longer face limits on the time they can spend away from their homes for education or recreation. Previous restrictions allowing Melburnians to travel only 5 kilometres (3 miles) from home will increase at midnight to 25 kilometres (15 miles).

Outdoor gatherings of up to 10 people from two households will be allowed and golf and tennis can resume.

Victoria state reported only two new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday and no deaths. The rolling 14-day average of cases dropped to eight, the lowest in four months.

There were only 137 active cases across Victoria state on Sunday with 12 people receiving hospital treatment, none in intensive care.

Regulations will be further loosened on Nov. 2 with the partial reopening of shops, bars and restaurants.

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The Associated Press