TRAVEL restrictions are set to be lifted in parts of Dumfries and Galloway caught in a cross-border Covid outbreak.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon confirmed that 12 positive cases and 23 contacts in total have been identified since last Monday, but that public health teams are "now as confident as we can be that this cluster is under control".

There were only 60 cases of Covid detected in the whole of Scotland last week - through both NHS testing labs and drive-thru centres - meaning NHS Dumfries and Galloway accounted for 20 per cent of them.

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Residents of Gretna, Annan, Dumfries, Lockerbie, Langholm and Canonbie were asked not to travel more than five miles for leisure over the weekend while contact tracing was carried out.

The cluster is believed to be linked to a Covid outbreak at a hospital in Carlisle and to have been brought across the border by a healthcare worker resident in Scotland.

Ms Sturgeon warned that other communities will face similar temporary curbs as lockdown is eased.

She said: "This will not be the last localised outbreak that we see. There will be further occasions in other parts of Scotland where we may have to ask people to restrict their activities as an outbreak is contained.

"But that's the reality of trying to control a virus for which we don't have, as yet, any treatment and no vaccine.

"It's only by complying with strict control measures that we'll be able to keep the virus under control and hopefully reduce the number of outbreaks that we face."

In England, the city of Leicester remains under a local lockdown following a spike in cases that has closed shops and schools and delayed the re-opening of pubs and restaurants.

In Spain, parts of Catalunya and Galicia have also been placed under localised lockdowns, while in Australia, the states of Victoria and New South Wales have closed their border for the first time in 100 years amid an upsurge of coronavirus in Melbourne.

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It comes as Ms Sturgeon warned against complacency as the latest figures for Scotland show that the number of new cases has more than halved in the past three weeks, from 155 in the week beginning June 15 to 60 last week.

The percentage of tests returning a positive result has also fallen over the same period, from five in every 1000 to two in every 1000 by last week.

Ms Sturgeon confirmed that there had been four new cases confirmed in the past 24 hours, but no deaths.