Lifting coronavirus lockdown measures too early could spark a “deadly resurgence” in infections, the World Health Organization chief has warned.
Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said countries should be cautious about easing restrictions, even as some struggle with the economic impact.
Europe’s worst hit countries, Spain and Italy, are both relaxing some measures, while their lockdowns continue.
Globally there are 1.6 million cases of coronavirus and 101,000 deaths.
Speaking at a virtual news conference in Geneva, Dr Tedros said there had been a “welcome slowing” of the epidemics in some European countries.
He said the WHO was working with governments to form strategies for easing restrictions, but that this should not be done too soon.
“Lifting restrictions too quickly could lead to a deadly resurgence,” he said.
“The way down can be as dangerous as the way up if not managed properly.”