‘Different views’ remain after tight talks on ending Aberdeen lockdown

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It is still unclear what will happen to a review of Aberdeen’s local lockdown this afternoon after the tight talks ended in deadlock.Council leaders met with Scottish government officials this morning to advocate for an easing of restrictions.

Aberdeen’s lockdown will be partially lifted at midnight, it is understood

It is understood that no agreement can be reached after two hours.

Between the council and the staff of the government, neither the Prime Minister nor any of her ministers was on call.

This morning’s meeting was due to produce recommendations for submission to ministers this afternoon – but no consensus was reached.

It is not yet clear when Prime Minister Nicola Sturgeon will make a statement on the local lockdown, now in its third week.

As she extended it, apparently against recommendations from local health experts from the Incident Management Team (IMT), she promised a midweek review today.

REGIONAL BREAKDOWN: 83 new cases of Covid-19 across Scotland – including three in Grampian

Council co-head Douglas Lumsden told P&J: “There are still different views on the approach to take; we’re still trying to get a deal.

“We argued that health experts should not be ignored and we should take their advice that the restrictions should be lifted.

“Statistics show that our infection rate must now be around the national average, so if the restrictions aren’t lifted now we’re in line with everyone, so God knows when they will be.

“It really makes me angry that Aberdeen businesses are being treated unfairly.

“We have infection rates elsewhere in the country that are much higher than ours and medical professionals have told us that the Aberdeen outbreak is completely under control.

“It doesn’t seem right that we are the ones with the restrictions while others with the higher infection rates.

It comes as three other people have tested positive for Grampian virus in the past 24 hours, compared to 37 in the NHS Tayside region.

The IMT report reportedly recommended lifting restrictions on “low risk” places, such as cafes, yesterday.

The forced closure of pubs and restaurants reportedly followed on Wednesday.

Almost three weeks ago, the government introduced local measures – including closing all reception areas and banning people traveling more than five miles or gathering inside – after a cluster of coronavirus cases has been traced in pubs across the city.

Yesterday, the NHS Grampian said 254 people have been linked to the outbreak – existing cases previously thought unrelated to have been traced to affected nightclubs.

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