PM Johnson imposes new measures after UK reports Omicron variant cases

WION Web Team
London Published: Nov 27, 2021, 11:20 PM(IST)

Britain's PM Johnson speaks at a press conference on the new Omicron variant in London Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

UK PM Johnson declared that people who had come in contact with those infected with the Omicron variant must self-isolate for a period of ten days even if they are vaccinated.

After the UK reported two cases of the Omicron variant on Saturday, British PM Boris Johnson declared that all passengers arriving in the UK must isolate themselves until they can show a negative PCR test to the authorities.

The British prime minister said the test should be taken by the second day of arrival in the UK and travellers should self-isolate until then.

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Johnson declared that people who had come in contact with those infected with the Omicron variant must self-isolate for a period of ten days even if they are vaccinated.

Watch: WHO designates B.1.1529 as a ‘variant of concern’

"I very much hope that we will find that we continue to be in a strong position and we can lift these measures again," PM Johnson said, adding, "We now need to go further and implement a new testing regime." 

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Face coverings have been made mandatory on public transport and shops, the government declared on Saturday.

Also Read: Passengers arriving from South Africa at Amsterdam airport test positive for COVID-19

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The prime minister added that the measures are "temporary and precautionary" and it will be reviewed in three weeks.

Also Read: Omicron: What does variant of concern mean?

Britain on Friday had banned all flights from South Africa after the country reported the B.1.1.529 variant which was named Omicron by the WHO and designated as a "variant of concern".

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After the new variant was discovered, Britain expanded the travel ban to include Angola, Zambia, Mozambique and Malawi. The country had already barred travellers from South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Lesotho and Eswatini on Friday.

Also Read: After Belgium, UK reports two Omicron variant cases

UK health secretary Sajid Javid warned that the country wasn't out of the pandemic as he urged people to get vaccinated. 

Britain has fully vaccinated over 80 per cent of the adult population, however, the number of COVID-19 cases have been steadily rising since the past month.

Also Read: Omicron-typical mutations were found in a traveller, says German minister

UK is one of the worst-hit countries due to the virus with over 10 million COVID-19 cases and more than 145,000 fatalities.

(With inputs from Agencies)

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