LONDON (Reuters) - Britain will introduce a COVID-19 quarantine for travellers arriving from abroad from June 8, interior minister Priti Patel said on Friday, a measure that airlines have warned will devastate their industry.
All international arrivals, including returning Britons, will have to self-isolate for 14 days and provide details of where they will be staying under the plans, which were criticised by airlines, business groups and politicians alike.
“Now we are past the peak of this virus, we must take steps to guard against imported cases triggering a resurgence of this deadly disease,” Patel said at a news conference.
Those who breached the quarantine in England could be fined 1,000 pounds ($1,218), and spot checks would be carried out by health and border officials.
The quarantine will not apply to those arriving from the Irish Republic, nor to freight drivers, medical professionals and seasonal agricultural workers. The measures will be reviewed every 3 weeks. [nL8N2D44UM]
Transport minister Grant Shapps has also suggested the government would seek to negotiate “air bridges” for travellers coming from countries with low virus infection rates.
Unlike many other countries, Britain has carried out few tests and checks on visitors, with quarantine limited only to arrivals from China at the start of the outbreak.
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