Lanarkshire has been put into the second-highest tier of the Scottish Government's new coronavirus restrictions.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon confirmed the region would be placed in level three and not level four in a statement to the Scottish Parliament this afternoon after the rise in new cases had started to slow.

Yesterday, 266 new Covid-19 cases were confirmed in the region which has seen some of the highest transmission rates in Europe in recent weeks.

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In a "borderline" decision, a number of businesses across the region have been given a reprieve as restrictions won't change when the new five-tier system comes into effect on Monday (November 2).

The First Minister also pleaded with the people of Lanarkshire to stick to the rules to avoid more severe restrictions with the government set to keep the decision under review on a daily basis.

Addressing MSPs prior to First Minister's Questions, Ms Sturgeon said: "The decision between level three and level four has been very finely balanced.

"Lanarkshire has a high number of cases, a high test positivity rate and a high number of patients in hospital and ICU.

"However, there is evidence in recent days that the situation is stabilising and that is undoubtedly down to the compliance and sacrifices of local people.

"The local councils, NHS Lanarkshire and the police believe they have strong partnership plans in place to maintain that progress under current restrictions.

"For these reasons, and given the severity of level four restrictions we have decided that North and South Lanarkshire should remain in level three at present.

"I want to be very clear, this has been a borderline decision and it is one that we require to keep under review, not just weekly, but on a daily basis.

"I would appeal therefore to people across Lanarkshire to continue to play your part. Please abide strictly with all the rules and guidance and help ensure that the rise in cases continues to slow and that more severe restrictions can be avoided."