World leaders are beginning to realise that there’s a lack of co-ordination over action to tackle the coronavirus crisis.
Although doctors and academics are working together to make sense of data and come up with a vaccine, politicians are enforcing different sets of rules.
In the UK, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab has announced a three-week extension of the country’s strict lockdown rules – and not ruled out a further extension if required.
In a sometimes defensive briefing, he refused to reveal the options medical advisers and ministers were considering as an exit strategy.
He also declined to give a timeframe for the lockdown.
“There is light at the end of the tunnel, but we are now at both a delicate and a dangerous stage in this pandemic,” he said.
“If we rush to relax the measures that we have in place we would risk wasting all the sacrifices and all the progress that has been made.
“That would risk a quick return to another lockdown with all the threat to life that a second peak to the virus would bring and all the economic damage that a second lockdown would carry.”
Meanwhile European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen offered a ‘heartfelt apology’ to the government in Italy, admitting the EU response to the pandemic was patchy and countries in the bloc were not doing enough to help each other.
Italy has seen 21,000 coronavirus deaths – the most outside the USA.
Her comments follow claims Germany, France and the Czech Republic hoarded vital respirators instead of offering aid to their ally.
Who is making the right decision?
In Germany, Chancellor Angela Merkel plans to open schools from May 1, while Austria and Denmark are allowing some shops to start letting in customers again.
Germany is also bringing in a rule that everyone must wear a face mask in public, with Poland considering the same idea.
The issue from the outside is if each leader is following medical advice, why are the reactions to lifting the lock down different in each country if academics and scientists are sharing and interpreting the same data?
One reason could be each country has a different coronavirus timescale.
In America, President Donald Trump maintains the virus has peaked and coronavirus restrictions would life in some states at the end of the month.
The country has suffered 640,000 cases of the virus and seen 31,000 deaths.