Ireland is in the middle of a national and global emergency.

That's according to Taoiseach Leo Varadker, who made a rare Ministerial Address to the nation last night on the coronavirus pandemic.

The Government has announced that emergency legislation is to be put before the Dáil tomorrow.

It follows the confirmation last night of 69 new cases of covid-19 in the Republic -- bringing the total to 292.

5 of the new cases are in the north/western region, and 3 in the West.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said the outbreak was unprecedented in our lifetimes, and restrictions may continue for months.

He warned that this is just "the calm before the storm - before the surge" and said it could take months for the coronavirus to be brought under control.

The Taoiseach also said older people and those with a long term illness will be advised at some point to stay at home for several weeks, during the coronavirus crisis.

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