LONDON (AP) — Britain’s federal government has banned journey from South The usa and Portugal to assure a new variant of COVID-19 identified in Brazil does not derail the country’s vaccination system, while there are no indicators the variant has reached the U.K.
Transportation Secretary Grant Shapps said the ban, which took effect Friday morning, was extended to Portugal since lots of men and women who arrive to Europe from South The us vacation by Portugal.
“We really do not have conditions at the second, but this is a precautionary strategy,” Shapps told the BBC. “We want to make certain that we do every little thing possible so that vaccine rollout can go on and make certain that it’s not disturbed by other variants of this virus.”
The announcement will come just a handful of weeks right after lots of international locations banned travel from the U.K. adhering to the discovery of an additional variant of the virus that is more contagious than earlier types and has been blamed for a sharp increase in bacterial infections and fatalities relevant to COVID-19. There is no indicator, nevertheless, that the variant reacts any in a different way to the vaccines.
But Portuguese International Minister Augusto Santos Silva claimed the U.K.’s selection was “without logic” and explained he would request clarification from his British counterpart.
“Suspending flights from Portugal with the argument of the connections involving Portugal and Brazil is, with all thanks regard, totally absurd,” he mentioned in an job interview posted on the net by the newspaper Diario de Noticias.
The U.K. is ramping up its mass vaccination software as the authorities seeks to secure the country’s oldest and most vulnerable people right before easing a 3rd nationwide lockdown.
Much more than 2.9 million people have received at the very least 1 dose of vaccine. Britain designs to give the to start with dose to far more than 15 million men and women, such as individuals around 70, frontline healthcare staff and others who are especially vulnerable to the virus, by the center of February.
“We’re so near now that we want to make guaranteed we do absolutely every thing doable to give us the most effective opportunity of beating this virus, which is why it is critical that we do act swiftly on these issues,” Shapps said.
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