Argentina extends quarantine for capital, relaxes elsewhere


BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) – Argentina has extended a quarantine for its capital Buenos Aires until May 24 but eased the restriction aimed at slowing the spread of the novel coronavirus elsewhere in the country, President Alberto Fernandez said on Friday.

The lockdown, which was due to expire on Sunday, will remain in place in the capital and its outskirts, Fernandez said in a televised address.

Fernandez said he was “extremely proud” of Argentines for observing the strict social isolation measures, which he said had helped the government achieve its goal of flattening the curve of cases and deaths.

Argentines have been holed up at home since the quarantine was announced on March 20, but since last month they have been allowed to take short walks outside their homes during the day.

Buenos Aires Mayor Horacio Rodríguez Larreta said at the same press conference that children would now be allowed outside to exercise with their parents on weekends.

Argentina has been in national quarantine for seven weeks and the government has extended it three times before.

As of Friday, the country had recorded 5,611 confirmed cases of the virus and 293 deaths.

Reporting by Maximilian Health, writing by Cassandra Garrison and Aislinn Laing; Editing by Sandra Maler

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