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Philippines extends lockdown by two weeks amid alarming coronavirus spike

Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte
Associated Press Reporter

The Philippines is extending an already month-long lockdown by two weeks as the country’s worst coronavirus infection spike starts to ease but remains alarming.

President Rodrigo Duterte said in televised remarks that the second-most restrictive lockdown level will now run through May 14 in metropolitan Manila and four nearby provinces, a region of more than 25 million people.

Mayors, however, cut a nine-hour night curfew in metropolitan Manila to six hours to help battered businesses.

Mr Duterte is warning mayors and village chiefs that they face jail if they do not prevent gatherings and other events that violate the pandemic restrictions.

Confirmed coronavirus infections in the Philippines soared past one million on Monday, with deaths now at more than 17,000, the second highest in Southeast Asia.

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