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PM Boris Johnson addresses Commons following lockdown easing strategy being announced

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Addressing the House of Commons this afternoon, Prime Minister Boris Johnson made a statement about the next steps in the battle against coronavirus. 

His remarks come less than 24 hours after he clarified, in part, the strategy for easing the lockdown Sunday evening. 

The statement today was very much a repeat of yesterday's broadcast.

Johnson said: "We have together observed the toughest restriction on our freedoms in memory, changing our way of life on a scale unimaginable only months ago."

He continued: "Our challenge now is to find a way forward that preserves our hard won gains while easing the burden of the lockdown. There could be no greater mistake than to jeopardise everything we have striven to achieve by proceeding too far and too fast." 

Addressing the differences in approach, being taken by England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, to easing lockdown, the prime minister acknowledged that parts of the UK may have to stay fully locked down for some time yet, but that "divergence should only be short term".

Explaining that he was in "no doubt that we must defeat this threat and face the challenge of recovery together".

The government today submitted its plans for a phased lockdown exit strategy to the House. 

A plan which Johnson continues to stress is ''conditional and dependent as always on the common sense and observance of the British people and continual reassessment of the data."

Despite steps to relax the lockdown Johnson said that the view still prevailed that if you can stay at home you should and that the steps being taken now were governed by science.

In concluding his statement Johnson said: "I know that the British public is going to continue to help the police and everybody to enforce the rules, to get our reproduction rate down and to get this disease even further under control by continuing to apply good solid British common sense."

Leader of the opposition Keir Starmer queried, following the statement, when exactly workplace guidelines would be published with some getting ready to go back to work Wednesday. 

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