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Britain to impose mandatory hotel quarantine, starting Feb 15

Xinhua | Updated: 2021-02-05 09:47
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An aircraft takes off at Heathrow Airport amid the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic in London, Britain, Feb 4, 2021. [Photo/Agencies]

LONDON - Travelers returning to Britain from more than 30 "red list" countries will have to quarantine for 10 days in government-approved accommodation like hotels, starting Feb 15, the British government announced on Thursday.

The measure is being introduced to prevent new variants of COVID-19 from entering Britain. Countries on the list include all of South America, southern Africa, Portugal and the United Arab Emirates. Non-residents and nationals from these countries have already been banned from entering Britain.

A Department of Health and Social Care spokesperson said the department was "working at pace to secure the facilities we need to roll out managed quarantine for British nationals returning home from the most high-risk countries".

"In the face of new variants, it is important that the government continues to take the necessary steps to protect people and save lives," the spokesperson said.

More details will be set out next week on how travelers can book into the quarantine accommodation, according to Sky News.

Another 20,634 people in Britain have tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the total number of coronavirus cases in the country to 3,892,459, according to official figures released Thursday.

The country also reported another 915 coronavirus-related deaths. The total number of coronavirus-related deaths in Britain now stands at 110,250.

England is currently under the third national lockdown since the outbreak of the pandemic in the country. Similar restriction measures are also in place in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

To bring life back to normal, countries such as Britain, China, Germany, Russia and the United States have been racing against time to roll out coronavirus vaccines.

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