Tonga has entered a lockdown after five COVID-19 cases were recorded in the capital Nuku’alofa over the past 48 hours, an official statement said.

This is the first time that Tonga has imposed a lockdown as the South Pacific island nation previously managed to stay virus-free until last October when it reported only one case.

The lockdown began at 06:00 p.m., days after the island nation began receiving aid in the wake of a deadly volcanic eruption that also triggered huge tsunami waves.

No one is allowed to go outside their homes unless there is a medical emergency. Those who have to attend to livestock or harvest crops will also be exempted.

The first two cases in the country were detected in port workers and later three more cases were reported in their family members.

Australian and Tongan officials said that aid deliveries have no connection with the COVID-19 outbreak as all supplies provided by Australia, New Zealand and other countries were safe and without human-to-human contact, according to ABC News.

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