SCOTTISH Labour has urged parliament to reconvene in a bid to tackle the coronavirus outbreak.

The Scottish Parliament is currently in its Easter recess, which is due to last for two weeks, with MSPs expected to return on April 21.

But a letter from Labour business manager Elaine Smith to Presiding Officer Ken Macintosh asks that MSPs are recalled to deal with the outbreak.

Smith pointed to the resignation of the chief medical officer and the deaths of 16 residents of Burlington Care Home in Glasgow since the end of March.

The MSP said the Scottish Government should be held to account for their response to the outbreak.

She said: "The eventual resignation of the chief medical officer and matters surrounding this, including the arrangements going forward, is a situation which requires an explanation to parliament.

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"It is unacceptable that questions to the First Minister are solely left to the Scottish press, with members of parliament having to follow developments via the media."

She added: "Another alarming development that members have read about in the press over the weekend is the tragic deaths in one week of thirteen residents of Burlington Care Home in Cranhill, Glasgow, and a further three deaths reported this morning.

"Two members of staff have tested positive for Covid-19 and are being treated in hospital but, as I understand, the residents were not tested. This is a matter which requires urgent scrutiny of the Scottish Government by parliament.

"I hope you will agree that Parliament should not now continue with an Easter break whilst questions remain unanswered regarding these issues and that the Scottish Government must be held to account and scrutinised by members during these unprecedented times of national crisis."

On Friday, another letter from Smith to the Presiding Officer called for parliamentary authorities to look into being able hold meetings remotely.

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