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Health workers pray before going out for coronavirus check-ups in Cali, Colombia, on April 20.
Health workers pray before going out for coronavirus check-ups in Cali, Colombia, on April 20. Luis Robayo/AFP/Getty Images

Colombia is extending its coronavirus lockdown through May 10, President Ivan Duque said Monday.

In an address to the nation, Duque said that essential businesses such as grocery stores, banks and local transport will remain open, but borders will stay shut and commercial flights will only resume in June.

Other economic sectors may be allowed to return to operate before May 11, depending on how the health situation evolves, Duque said.

Duque acknowledged the economic damage caused by the shutdown, but said that these emergency measures were aimed at strengthening the country’s health system. 

“We cannot let uncertainty shake us as a society”, he said. 

More than 77% of Colombia’s workforce is currently out of work and without welfare protection, Duque’s vice president Marta Lucia Ramirez said on Sunday. 

As of today, Colombia has reported 3,977 coronavirus cases, including 189 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.

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