The Taoiseach says a decision on exiting Level 5 restrictions will be made next week.

Micheál Martin told a meeting of the Fianna Fáil parliamentary party last night that he wants people to have a 'wholesome and enjoyable' Christmas.

A Dáil debate on exiting Level 5 in early December will take place on Tuesday, however the ultimate decision will be taken by cabinet later in the week.

It comes as the death toll associated with Covid-19 here has now passed 2,000, after a further 12 deaths were reported yesterday along with 379 new cases.

This includes 17 new cases in Galway, 10 in Mayo, 6 in Sligo, 5 in Roscommon and less than 5 in Leitrim.

Roscommon is currently the only Connacht county with a 14-day incidence rate higher than the national average.

The average 14-day rate nationally is now just under 120 cases per 100,000 people - in Roscommon, it's 158 and is now the 5th highest county in the country.

Meanwhile, Galway now has the 3rd lowest 14-day rate.

The National Public Health Emergency Team will meet today amid concerns that the progress in tackling Covid-19 has slowed significantly over the past week.

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