Northern Irish police have launched a website asking members of the public to report fellow citizens for breaching coronavirus social distancing guidelines.

The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) website allows individuals to report non-essential travel, gatherings of people from multiple households in public or private, and licensed premises remaining open.

"Tell us about a possible breach of coronavirus (COVID-19) measures," reads a link to the page on the PSNI website.

A form then asks users to input the address where the incident is alleged to have occurred as well as their own personal details. 

"We want to resolve situations where the restrictions are being contravened without having to resort to enforcement powers or issuing fines," PSNI assistant chief constable Alan Todd said in a statement.

"However, where breaches do occur, we want to make it as easy as possible for members of the public to tell us."

Todd asked the public to "carefully consider the circumstances before making a report" but said "all reports will be considered" by officers.

Emergency powers enacted in Northern Ireland on 28 March mandated the closure of businesses, the cancellation of gatherings and placed limits on non-essential travel.

Officers have the power to issue £60 (€69) fines to those in breach of the regulations, doubling each time the breach is repeated to a maximum of £960.

The PSNI has received 906 complaints of COVID-19 restrictions being broken since they came into effect.

Northern Ireland's First Minister Arlene Foster joined with Deputy First Minister Michelle O'Neill and all the other ministers in the power-sharing executive in a video message stressing the importance of staying at home to limit the spread of COVID-19.

Mrs Foster said: "Easter is a special time for families and we understand how difficult this year will be for people.

"But this Easter, even though we can't be together, we can all still do something special.

"We can help to save lives by staying at home, protecting the most vulnerable, protecting our frontline workers, and protecting our health service.

"We should remember that the message of Easter is all about hope.

"We know and trust that these difficult times will pass.

"By staying home this weekend, and the days to come, we will protect each other and our whole community and prevent heartbreak being brought to someone's door."

The First Minister added: "I would remind people that the PSNI will have a strong presence on the ground over the Easter period and beyond, and they will take action against anyone who is flouting the rules on non-essential travel and social distancing.

"So I urge everyone to please stay at home and don't go out unless you absolutely have to."

Ms O'Neill said: "We are depending on our healthcare staff and other frontline workers to get us through this time of crisis.

"We all owe them a huge debt of gratitude, and the best way we can show them how much we appreciate what they are doing is by staying at home.

"Easter is normally a time when people come together and spend time with each other.

"But this isn't a normal Easter, and if we behave as normal then more people will lose their lives.

"I know this isn't easy, but it won't last forever.

"So please keep your resolve and don't go out unless it's essential.

"It's in your gift to save lives."

The Deputy First Minister added: "You must only go out of your home: to shop for basic necessities once a day at the most; to take exercise no more than once a day, alone, or with your household; for medical reasons for yourself, or if providing care or to support a vulnerable person; and to travel to essential work if it absolutely cannot be done from home."

There have been 1,477 confirmed cases and 82 reported deaths associated with the coronavirus in Northern Ireland, according to the latest figures from the North's Public Health Agency (PHA).