Australia's prime minister calls for public gatherings of no more than 2 people

Australia's prime minister calls for public gatherings of no more than 2 people
© Aaron Schwartz

Australia’s prime minister on Sunday recommended that no more than two people should gather in public amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“States and territories will decide whether they proceed to make this an enforceable limit in the same way that the 10-person limit is already being enforced,” Scott Morrison said, according to 7News Australia.

“But in all cases, this is the strong advice of all states and Territories, that unless it’s your household, the family, those that are living at your residence, that being with only one other person as a gathering outside is what is required,” he added.

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Morrison also said those over the age of 70 should self-isolate, and called for Australians to limit their shopping to essential items.

“It is not a time for browsing," he said. “It is not a time for catching up with friends or bumping into people and having a long conversation.”

Morrison’s comments come as governments around the globe enact restrictions in an effort to limit the spread of the deadly disease.

In the U.S., the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a travel advisory late Saturday for the New York tri-state area.

Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo (D) earlier in the day issued an executive order mandating that residents of the state stay at home amid the coronavirus outbreak.

More than 678,000 people so far have been infected with coronavirus worldwide, and 31,700 deaths have been reported, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. Approximately 3,980 cases have been reported in Australia, along with 8 deaths in the state of New South Wales.

Australia earlier this month closed its borders to noncitizens.