Spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Karachi. REUTERS

 Pakistan’s coronavirus lockdown will be lifted on Saturday, Prime Minister Imran Khan said, despite the fact that the number of cases in the country is still accelerating.

The decision is being taken because the country’s large number of poor people and laborers cannot not afford to live under lockdown any more, he said on Thursday.

“We’re deciding that we are ending this lockdown now,” Khan said in a televised address. “We know that we’re doing it at a time when our curve is going up…. but it is not edging up as we were expecting.”

Pakistan, which has undergone a five-week lockdown, has reported 24,073 coronavirus cases with 564 deaths, and recorded its highest single-day increase of 1,523 cases on Thursday.


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