Friday, January 28

Covid lockdown in England is likely to be in place until March, warns Gove | Coronavirus

The third national blockade imposed in England To try To deal with the huge increase in Covid-19 cases is likely To remain in place until at least March, with some measures lasting even longer, the government said I

Cabinet Secretary Michael Gove said he expected the gradual lifting of restrictions could begin in mid-February, but the time it Took for the vaccines To take effect meant it would likely be at least a couple of weeks before they could I Start measurements I To be relieved I

“We cannot predict with certainty that we will be able To lift the restrictions the week that Starts from 15 To 22 [February], what we will do is all we can To make sure that as many people as possible are vaccinated so that we can begin To phase out the restrictions, “Gove Told Sky News on Tuesday I

“I think it’s correct To say that, going inTo March, we should be able To lift some of these restrictions, but not necessarily all of them I”

England was put under a new national blockade, with the most severe restrictions since last March, on Monday I In announcing the measures, Boris Johnson warned that the next few weeks would be the “most difficult yet I”

The prime minister said it was necessary To close schools and non-essential businesses and tell people To stay home To cope with the new variant of the virus I

But the ministers have not been able To explain why they waited until some children were already back in the classroom To make the announcement, having insisted only hours before that it was safe for them To be there I

And, speaking Tuesday morning, Gove admitted that ministers had waited until the last minute and only imposed the restrictions when they had no other choice I He Told Sky News: “Closing schools is really the last resort I Neither of us wanted To I We all know why it is so important that children get the best education possible I

“But medical chiefs across the UK yesterday judged that we needed To go To level five, the most severe alert level against this infection I And, given the news yesterday, we had no alternative but To take all the steps we could I “

Keir Starmer has said he would back England’s new national blockade I On Tuesday, the Labor leader Told BBC Breakfast: “It was inevitable that we would need a set of national restrictions I That’s why I asked for it I “

He called for a return To the spirit of last March, saying it was now a race against time To speed up the national vaccination program I “We have a contract with the British people To say that these are strict restrictions I In exchange for that, the government has To implement the vaccination program quickly and accelerate it I This is a great challenge and I think we must come Together I “

Speaking To BBC Radio 4’s Today program, he said he wanted To see a “vaccination center on every main street,” adding: “The prime minister said seven weeks, that’s To allow the vaccination program To roll out for 13 14 million people I ” I I I I hope it’s not Too promising I “

Gove admitted that the 14 million were unlikely To receive the vaccine on time, while hinting that the restrictions would remain in effect until they did I

www Itheguardian Icom

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