The Australian government has suspended its travel bubble with New Zealand, following three community cases of Covid-19 in Auckland.

The move to classify New Zealand as a “red zone” will initially last for 72 hours from today (February 15), mirroring the three-day Auckland lockdown announced by the New Zealand government.

It means that all travellers arriving into Australia from New Zealand will have to go into 14 days of supervised hotel quarantine.

Australia’s Chief Medical Officer, Professor Paul Kelly said that the country’s states “will determine how to manage people who have already arrived in Australia from New Zealand and who may pose a risk of transmitting the Covid-19 virus”.

A statement also said that The Australian Health Protection Principal Committee “will consider further updates from New Zealand tomorrow and provide advice to the Chief Medical Officer regarding the management of travel arrangements between New Zealand and Australia”.

Reports by The Guardian and The Independent state that the community cases discovered in Auckland are the more infectious UK variant of the virus, which led to swathes of countries closing their borders to the UK back in December.

Growing list of countries ban travel from UK over new coronavirus variant