1. ITV Report

Lockdown in NI will remain in place for ‘foreseeable’ future

Empty roads due to lockdown. Credit: Pacemaker

Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey has warned restrictions on movement in Northern Ireland will remain in place for the foreseeable future.

Speaking at Stormont, Ms Hargey said if people did not stay at home, enforcement measures could be increased.

"I think it is clear that getting into a car to go and take exercise is not going to do exercise," she said.

"It's actually a day-trip out, and it's unnecessary and it shouldn't happen."

Enforcement action will happen if that needs to happen.

– Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey

The number of deaths linked to coronavirus in Northern Ireland is now 78.

There were 84 new confirmed cases of the virus, bringing the total to 1,339.

There has been appeal from the PSNI for people not to travel to popular beauty spots over the Easter weekend.

Chief Constable Simon Byrne said: "Easter weekend is one that traditionally many people look forward to enjoying with friends and family.

"There’s a stretch in the evenings and the weather’s better, but please don’t be tempted to head to parks and beaches.

"Now isn’t the right time, you need to follow the rules that have been put in place. What we do now can help slow the virus – and we all have our part to play in that."

Meanwhile, gardaí have been manning a series of checkpoints along a number of border roads.

It is part of a five-day operation where officers are enforcing new powers to restrict travel.

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