Senior ministers will consider a ban on travel to the UK from Brazil following concern over a new coronavirus pressure within the South American nation.
The authorities’s COVID-19 operations committee is due to meet on Thursday to talk about the problem, amid experiences any travel ban may be prolonged to nations neighbouring Brazil.
It has been recommended this might embody travel restrictions being positioned on Argentina, Uruguay, Peru and Colombia.
Travel bans have beforehand been launched for these coming from Denmark and South Africa, in response to different new strains to have developed in these nations.
Home Office minister Victoria Atkins advised Sky News the federal government has “acted decisively” previously following the event of new variants in different elements of the world.
Asked why travel between Brazil and neighbouring nations to the UK had not but been closed off, she mentioned: “Of course, folks flying into the UK, whether or not from South America or elsewhere are required to have a 10-day quarantine interval once they land within the UK. That is necessary.
“In phrases of the choice on travel measures, it takes just a little little bit of time.
“What we’d like to guarantee is that after we make these very, essential choices which have a big impact on folks’s private lives, but in addition companies, we’ve obtained to have just a little little bit of time to let that mattress in.
“The prime minister was clear that measures will likely be taken, we’ve acted decisively previously with each the Denmark and South African variants, so I would not need to speculate additional at this stage.”
At Christmas, Brazil was amongst quite a lot of nations to droop all flights from or by way of the UK due to the emergence of a new COVID variant in Britain.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Wednesday advised MPs that the federal government was “involved” in regards to the new Brazilian variant.
He mentioned: “We have already got powerful measures… to defend this nation from new infections coming in from overseas.
“We are taking steps to do that in respect of the Brazilian variant.”
Mr Johnson mentioned there have been “lots of questions” over the Brazil variant, together with whether or not it’s resistant to COVID vaccines.
Meanwhile, the federal government can be below strain after it delayed the introduction of pre-departure testing necessities for all worldwide travellers to England.
People arriving in England from overseas will now have to show they’ve examined detrimental for coronavirus from Monday and never Friday as initially deliberate.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps mentioned the delay was to “give international arrivals time to prepare” after the complete steerage was solely revealed on Wednesday.
This is regardless of Mr Shapps’s division having introduced the plans for new testing necessities final week.
Labour MP Yvette Cooper, the chair of the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee, posted on Twitter: “No steerage out with 2 days to go. And now delays.
“What on earth are they doing?”