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There was applause and cheers on the streets of Melbourne, Australia on Friday morning, but this time the Australian team was not clapping for health care workers.


They were celebrating the end of the city’s sixth COVID-19 lockdown.

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Melbourne spent 77 days on lockdown. But after Victoria achieved a 70% vaccination rate, an important milestone on the path to herd immunity, some restrictions were lifted at midnight on Friday.

Victoria’s Premier Daniel Andrews said: “It’s fair to say that Victorians have done an amazing job. So many people are going in and getting vaccinated so quickly.” “We’ve always said that the lockdown was an act of not having the vaccine we needed but if we got the vaccine, we would have many more options.”

Footage of the celebration quickly spread on social media. One Twitter user, who labeled his account “MrMG”, said that the night is almost New Year’s Eve.

According to the data collected by Johns Hopkins UniversityAustralia saw a huge jump in COVID-19 cases starting around July. The Delta variant is being blamed for the surge and Australia’s caseload being brought back to levels unseen since 2020.

Last week alone, more than 15,000 new cases were reported in Australia.

Since the start of the pandemic, there have been more than 154,000 cases in Australia. As of 22 October Victoria has accounted for 75,165 of them.

Victoria eased pandemic restrictions despite recording its deadliest day of the delta version’s outbreak with 16 COVID-19 deaths. In the last 24 hours, 2,189 new infections were also detected.

Sydney, where the Delta outbreak began in June, came out of lockdown last week after reaching the same 70% vaccination benchmark.

Australia is preparing to reopen its international borders for the first time in more than 18 months, but it will be a gradual, state-by-state process beginning in November. And it will depend on vaccination rates across the country.

People who are fully vaccinated will have fewer restrictions in Australia than those who are not.

This story was reported from Atlanta.