Kitty Donaldson and Olivia Konotey-Ahulu, Bloomberg News |
The U.K. advised its nationals against non-essential travel worldwide for the next 30 days as it ramped up its efforts against coronavirus.
“With immediate effect I’ve taken the decision to advise advise British nationals against all non-essential travel globally for an initial period of 30 days,” Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab told the House of Commons in London.
Raab said he will work with shipping companies to keep trade routes to and from the U.K. open. “We do regard this kind of travel as essential and we will work with industry to issue detailed advice,” he told lawmakers.
The move comes after Prime Minister Boris Johnson urged the U.K. public to avoid contact with other people and to cut out unnecessary journeys within the U.K. in an effort to fight the fast-spreading pandemic.
The U.K. has faced criticism for not copying the more robust restrictions in other European countries.
French President Emmanuel Macron declared “war” on Covid-19 on Monday evening with a raft of measures to keep citizens in lock-down, just a few days after ordering business closures and shutting schools. Germany’s Angela Merkel rolled out similar moves to shut down bars, cinemas, gyms and other gathering places.
With the number of coronavirus cases hitting 183,582 worldwide, and deaths exceeding 7,000, the European Union proposed on Monday that it should close its external borders for 30 days as it seeks to contain the spread of the pandemic. Despite the U.K. no longer being a member of the EU, Britons are still allowed to travel to continental Europe.
Last week U.S. President Donald Trump banned the entry of non-U.S. citizens from mainland EU countries, later adding the U.K. and Republic of Ireland to the list.
To contact the reporters on this story: Kitty Donaldson in London at email@example.com;Olivia Konotey-Ahulu in London at firstname.lastname@example.org
To contact the editors responsible for this story: Tim Ross at email@example.com, Thomas Penny, Stuart Biggs
©2020 Bloomberg L.P.