Britain reimposes quarantine for travellers from Belgium, Bahamas

07 Aug 2020 / 09:00 H.

LONDON: Britain on Thursday reimposed quarantine for travellers from Andorra, Belgium and the Bahamas following a spike in coronavirus cases in these countries.

“People arriving in England from Andorra, Belgium and the Bahamas from 4:00 am Saturday August 8 will need to self-isolate for two weeks,“ the transport ministry said in a statement, about a month after lifting these measures.

“There has been a consistent increase in Covid-19 cases per 100,000 of the population in Belgium since the middle of July, with a fourfold increase in total cases over this time period.

“In Andorra, new cases per week have increased 5-fold over the same time period, while in the Bahamas the weekly case rate peaked at 78.6 last week, up from 3.1 in mid-July,“ it said.

The Scottish government later tweeted that the three countries were being removed from its “quarantine exemption list”.

Brunei and Malaysia have been added to the corridors of both England and Scotland from August 11 after being assessed as posing a lower infection risk.

With over 46,000 deaths due to Covid-19 disease, the United Kingdom is the country in Europe most affected by the pandemic and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has been strongly criticised over his handling of the crisis.

Since relaxing the lockdown, “the government has made consistently clear it will take decisive action if necessary to contain the virus, including removing countries from the travel corridors list rapidly” if the public health risk becomes too high,“ said the ministry.

By the end of July, the United Kingdom had already reintroduced an unannounced quarantine for travellers arriving from Spain, catching the airlines by surprise and thousands of Britons leaving for their holidays there. -AFP

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