• Friday, December 02, 2022

HEADLINE STORY

Britain likely to impose national lockdown next week: report

Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson drinks water during a virtual news conference on the ongoing situation with the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), at Downing Street, London, Britain October 12, 2020. REUTERS/Toby Melville/Pool

By: Pramod Thomas

AS Covid-19 cases surge in the country Britain likely to impose a new national lockdown next week.

According to a report in The Times newspaper, prime minister Boris Johnson is considering imposing new national lockdown, amid concerns that hospitals across the country are overwhelmed by a resurgence in Covid-19 cases.

The new restrictions could be introduced on Wednesday(4) and remain in place until Dec. 1, the Times said.

Johnson is expected to hold a news conference on Monday(2) to announce the new measures, under which everything could be closed except essential shops and “educational settings,” the report said.

However, the new measures were still under discussion, and no final decision had been made, the Times added, citing a senior government source.

Cabinet Office officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Reuters.

The report added that the government is also considering tougher regional measures, known as Tier 4, but ministers are said to be in favour of a nationwide policy.

The UK on Friday(30) reported 24,405 new cases of Covid-19 and a further 274 deaths within 28 days of a positive test, according to government data.

It has now recorded more than 20,000 new coronavirus cases a day on average over the last week.

Covid-19 infections are rising so persistently in the UK that unless something can be done to reduce infections, the “reasonable worst case” scenario of 80,000 dead could be exceeded, scientists warned on Friday.

Currently, the government has a three-tier system of restrictions for local areas in England, with Level 3 the highest. Scotland, Wales and North Ireland run their own policies on fighting the pandemic.

In the third tier of restrictions, household mixing is banned, pubs and bars are ordered to remain closed, wedding receptions are not permitted, and travel to or from the area should be avoided.

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