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New dad Johnson holds cabinet meeting amid coronavirus criticism

Video Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on April 30, 2020 - Duration: 01:22s

New dad Johnson holds cabinet meeting amid coronavirus criticism

A day after his fiancé gave birth, Prime Minister Boris Johnson led a meeting of his top ministers on Thursday to discuss how to ease Britain's lockdown amid a backdrop of rising deaths and questions over the government's response to the COVID-19 crisis.

Lauren Anthony reports.

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New dad Johnson holds cabinet meeting amid coronavirus criticism

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson's coronavirus cabinet meeting on Thursday (April 30) comes at a crucial time for the leader.

Only a day ago, his fiancé gave birth to a son.

And it's been less than a week since he returned to work after recovering from the virus himself.

But questions are mounting over how to ease Britain's lockdown amid a backdrop of rising deaths.

New figures emerged on Wednesday (April 29) that show Britain now has the second highest official COVID-19 death toll in Europe.

A statistic that has fuelled caution in raising restrictions on movement in case that led to a second spike.

It's also underlined pressure from critics, including the Labour Party, over the government's response to the crisis.

The government will also face questions if it fails to meet their target of 100,000 daily tests for the virus by the end of April - with testing seen as key to ending the lockdown.

Johnson warned earlier this week that it would be risky to relax the stringent economic and social restrictions imposed six weeks ago, but with rising unemployment and many companies crippled, the government is coming under pressure to outline an exit strategy.

A review into the lockdown is expected to come before May 7 - and scientific advisers have been pitching options over how it might be eased.

The world leader will be delaying any paternity leave to head the cabinet meeting.

And is expected to front a daily media conference for the first time since he fell ill.

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