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COVID-19 update: New border rules for Australia as Brisbane enters lockdown

COVID-19 update: New border rules for Australia as Brisbane enters lockdown

New rules for Australia’s borders have been put in place as the country tries to prevent the spread of the new, highly transmissible variant of COVID-19.

COVID-19 update: New border rules for Australia as Brisbane enters lockdown

Travellers to Australia must now return a negative COVID-19 test result before departing on their journey.

Passengers coming to Australia from the United Kingdom will have to undergo rapid testing for the new strain of coronavirus before they board their flights.

The new rules also dictate that travellers will be required to wear masks for the duration of international and domestic flights.

Hotel quarantine workers will be tested daily, and the cap on return travellers will be cut by 50 per cent until 15 February in NSW, WA and Queensland.

The new protocols were agreed upon during a meeting of the National Cabinet, comprised of the prime minister and state and territory leaders.

Meanwhile, Greater Brisbane is set to enter a three-day lockdown from 6pm Friday night, due to a hotel quarantine worker becoming infected with the new coronavirus strain.

Borrowing from Jacinda Ardern’s playbook, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said “we are going to go hard and we are going to go early” to prevent the spread of the new strain.

“Think of it as a long weekend at home. We need to do this. I’ve accepted the strong advice from Dr Young,” she told Brisbane residents.

“If we do not do this now, it could end up being a 30-day lockdown.”

Prime Minister Scott Morrison praised the premier for the move and said it was a “wise call”.

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