Mandatory quarantine for UK nationals, No South Asian country in the ‘Red List’
London — New government measures are aimed at preventing new mutant COVID strains from reaching the UK.
UK nationals and residents returning from 30 “red list” countries will be placed in quarantine in government-provided accommodation – such as hotels – for 10 days, Boris Johnson has told MPs, the Skynews writes.
The prime minister said the new measures are aimed at preventing new mutant COVID strains from reaching the UK.
Mr Johnson reiterated that, under England’s national lockdown, it is currently “illegal to leave home to travel abroad for leisure purposes”.
He said the government would “enforce this at ports and airports by asking people why they are leaving and instructing them to return home if they do not have a valid reason to travel”.
And, announcing the new hotel quarantine requirements, Mr Johnson told MPs the government had already banned travel from countries “where there is a risk of known variants including South Africa, Portugal and South American nations”.
“In order to reduce the risk posed by UK nationals and residents returning home from these countries, I can announce that we will require all such arrivals who cannot be refused entry to isolate in government provided accommodation, such as hotels, for 10 days without exception,” he added.
“They will be met at the airport and transported directly into quarantine.”
The 30 countries on the “red list” include all those in South America, as well as large parts of Southern Africa and Portugal.
It is understood travellers from “red list” countries will have to pay to isolate in a monitored hotel, with coronavirus testing carried out during their stay.
The move has been widely anticipated in recent weeks, with critics arguing the government should have taken tougher action sooner.
They have pointed to the examples of Australia and New Zealand, who have had mandatory quarantines since the early weeks of the pandemic and have largely eliminated transmission of the virus within their borders.
Reports in recent days have emerged of competing views in government over how wide ranging the mandatory quarantine should be.
It has been suggested that some ministers have been arguing the mandatory quarantine should apply to arrivals for all countries, while others have been advocating targeting certain nations deemed to pose more of a risk.
The full list of “red list” countries are:
Angola, Argentina, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Cape Verde, Chile, Colombia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ecuador, Eswatini, French Guiana, Guyana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Portugal, Seychelles, South Africa, Suriname, Tanzania, Uruguay, Venezuela, Zambia and Zimbabwe.