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KIGALI, July 25 (Xinhua) -- Rwandan government on Sunday announced a five-day extension of the current lockdown measures that prohibit unnecessary movements in the capital city Kigali and eight districts, to consolidate gains in reducing the number of COVID-19 cases and related deaths.

The measures which started from July 17 has been extended through July 27, Office of the Prime Minister said in a communique.

"The decision by the government to extend the current lockdown for five more days will give us time to analyze the situation and consolidate what has been achieved in curbing the COVID-19 spread in our country," Director General of Rwanda Biomedical Center Sabin Nsanzimana told Xinhua in a telephone interview.

Currently, the majority of cases and deaths in Rwanda are related to the Delta variant, first detected in India, he said, adding that the government is focusing on securing vaccines to vaccinate at least 30 percent of its population by the end of 2021.

Under the lockdown, the public are not permitted to leave home except for essential services. The government also bans public transport, except for the transportation of people who "carry out" essential services, while motorcycles and bicycles will not be allowed to carry passengers.

Outdoor sports and recreational activities will be prohibited. Public and private offices and businesses are required to close unless they provide essential services.

Schools and higher education institutions are also closed. - Xinhua

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