International travelers must quarantine themselves for 10 days in government-provided accommodation to stop new variants of the virus, the prime minister said.
- The official coronavirus death toll in the UK has passed 100,000 as British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced hotel quarantines on international travelers to prevent new variants of the virus from reaching the country.
- More than 100.3 million people worldwide have been diagnosed with COVID-19 and some 2.1 million have died, according to a count from Johns Hopkins University. More than 55.5 million patients have recovered.
This is Mersiha Gadzo in Toronto, Canada. Here are the latest updates:
Vaccine spit heats up as AstraZeneca confirms plans for negotiations with EU
The European Union’s dispute with AstraZeneca has escalated, with the Anglo-Swedish drugmaker denying the EU’s claim it has withdrawn from negotiations over the supply of COVID-19 vaccines.
AstraZeneca said in a statement that it still plans to meet with EU officials in Brussels later today. The comments came after EU officials said the company informed the bloc it would not be attending a meeting to discuss the delayed vaccine commitments – the third of those talks in as many days.
Read more here.
British pm convinced vaccine supply will continue to accelerate
Johnson said he was convinced the country’s supplies of the COVID-19 vaccine would continue to accelerate.
“I am confident that … we will also be able to continue this accelerated supply curve,” said Johnson, when asked about possible vaccine shortages.
Questions about the number of people planning to come to the UK
Rory Challands of Al Jazeera, who reports from Gatwick Airport near London, said Johnson “is essentially saying the UK will tighten restrictions” as he tries to demonstrate his government has a grip on the pandemic.
But Challands noted that there were questions about ‘how many people were planning to come to the UK’ at the moment, given that it just crossed the grim 100,000 COVID-19 death toll and the toll is rising still more than 1000 per day.
Travelers to UK from high risk countries quarantined for 10 days
Travelers arriving to the UK from countries at high COVID-19 risk will need to be quarantined for 10 days in government-provided accommodation to stop new variants of the virus, Johhnson said.
“We will demand that all arrivals who cannot be refused entry self-isolate in government-provided accommodation, such as hotels, for 10 days without exception,” he told lawmakers.
“They will be met at the airport and transported directly to quarantine.”