'We must have ice in our stomachs': Norway minister calls for faith in lockdown
Norway's justice minister on Monday said the country needed to have faith in the measures taken so far, and stand firm in its battle against the coronavirus pandemic.
"We must have ice in our stomachs and have faith that the measures we have taken are right," Monica Mæland said at the government's daily press conference, according to Norwegian state broadcaster NRK. "This is about avoiding too many people going to hospital and avoiding deaths."
Norway's health minister Bent Høie warned people not to expect a roll-back of the most stringent measures so far taken, when the government on Tuesday makes a formal decision on whether to extends the two-week lockdown put into place on March 12.
"Many are hoping that the most stringent measures will be repealed," he said. "No decision has been made yet, but those who believe this spring will be normal will probably be disappointed. We most all prepare to live as normally as possible in an abnormal situation."
Høie said, however, that the growth in the number of coronavirus cases appeared to have stabilised in Norway, with about 200 new cases being confirmed each day.
"That the number is no longer growing significantly could be an effect of the actions we have taken," he said. "We should take this as an encouragement, but we cannot drop our guard."