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Boris Johnson Postpones Easing Lockdown

Αssociated Press

Britain s Prime Minister Boris Johnson, wearing a face mask, boards an ambulance during a visit to the headquarters of the London Ambulance Service NHS Trust in London, Monday July 13, 2020. (Ben Stansall/Pool via AP)

LONDON — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is postponing some planned measures to ease the lockdown because coronavirus cases are on the rise for the first time since May.

The government is scrapping plans to allow venues such as casinos, bowling alleys and skating rinks to open on Monday. A plan to allow a limited number of fans back into sports stadiums is on hold.

Johnson says the measures will be reviewed after two weeks.

He says a rule requiring face coverings worn in shops and on public transit will be extended to museums, galleries, cinemas and places of worship.

On Thursday, the government re-imposed restrictions on social life in a swath of northern England because of a surge in cases, barring households from visiting one another.

Scientists say they are no longer confident the R number, which measures how many people each infected person passes on the disease, is below 1 in England. A number above 1 means the virus will exponentially spread.