By Democrat reporter

Despite a new analysis released by the Office of National Statistics before lunchtime today, which confirms Scotland had the third highest level of excess deaths in Europe for the first half of 2020, Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon made no comment on this in her statement to Parliament today.

However, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie said:  “These statistics paint a devastating picture of the toll the coronavirus has taken on communities across Scotland.  

“In time we must look in depth at how the pandemic was handled and address painful failings.  

“We are thankfully at a point now where the prevalence of the virus has dramatically decreased. But this progress isn’t definite and scientists are warning of an imminent second wave.  

“We must use this window of time to conduct a rapid forward-looking review of our handling of the virus crisis so we are more prepared for future local flare-ups or a full-blown second wave.” 

Nicola Sturgeon’s full statement to parliament in relation to the latest lockdown guidelines appears in full in this issue of The Democrat.

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