LISTEN: Varadkar: "Increasingly confident" of Ireland exiting phase one of lockdown on Monday

by PA News team.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has said the Government is "increasingly confident" that Ireland will be able to move to phase one of its coronavirus lockdown measures on Monday.

"We are seeing what we can achieve when we put the needs of the many above the needs of the few," he told the Dail.

"The first steps to reawaken our economy will be done in a slow and gradual way.

"As we are seeing around the world, it is not a straight path. Sometimes progress is halted and there are setbacks.

Leo Varadkar

"Whilst every death is of concern, in the last seven days we've seen the lowest daily number of deaths and cases since March."

Mr Varadkar added: "We must remember we have a land border with Northern Ireland we want to stay open.

"While these rights may be restricted for a time, it is our policy to resume normal travel as soon as it is safe to do so.

"It is going to be months, not weeks before this is possible."

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