Boris Johnson announces coronavirus lockdown, cases continue to rise


British Prime Minister Boris Johnson ordered a national lockdown through mid-February in an effort to combat a variant of the coronavirus that is continuing to rapidly spread in the region. 

Under the rules, which are set to come into effect as soon as possible, primary and secondary schools, and colleges will be closed for face-to-face learning except for the children of key workers. University students will not be returning until at least mid-February.

Non-essential businesses such as hair salons and restaurants will be closed, although eateries can operate delivery services. As of Monday, England reported more than 26,600 COVID-19 patients in hospitals, which is a 30% jump from a week ago. 

Also on Monday, Scotland announced it is implementing a coronavirus lockdown.

The measures in Scotland, which start Tuesday and remain in effect until at least the end of this month, will ask residents to make trips outside of their homes only for essential purposes and to limit the size of outdoor gatherings to two people from separate households, not including children. Schools will also remain closed for in-person learning for most students. 

“It is no exaggeration to say that I am more concerned about the situation we face now than I have been at any time since March last year,” First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said.  “It is essential that we further limit interaction between different households to stem the spread and bring the situation back under control, while we vaccinate more people.”

Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson watches as nurse Jennifer Dumasi is injected with the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine, during a visit to view the vaccination programme at the Chase Farm Hospital in north London on Monday. (AP)

UK PRIME MINISTER BORIS JOHNSON WARNS ‘TOUGHER’ CORONAVIRUS MEASURES TO COME AS CASES SOAR WITH NEW VARIANT

Scotland, which has its own devolved government, has often imposed stricter coronavirus restrictions than those in England throughout the pandemic. Johnson said earlier Monday that there is “no question we will have to take tougher measures.” 

The United Kingdom, to date, has recorded 2.65 million coronavirus infections – 54,990 of which were newly reported on Sunday, according to statistics from Johns Hopkins University.  

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The U.K. on Monday also became the first country in the world to begin administering AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford’s coronavirus vaccine, following emergency authorization last week. 

The first vaccine went to 82-year-old dialysis patient Brian Pinker at Oxford University Hospital, according to a statement from NHS England. Pinker said the vaccination brought peace of mind as he looks forward to celebrating his 48th wedding anniversary with his wife Shirley in February. 

Fox News’ Kayla Rivas contributed to this report. 



Source by [WAQAS]

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