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Wales considering imposing quarantine on people entering from UK coronavirus hotspots

Written by on 5 October 2020

The Welsh government says it is “actively considering” imposing quarantine restrictions on people travelling into the country from areas of the UK with high coronavirus case numbers.

This could include hotspot areas of England such as the North East, North West, and West Midlands.

Health minister Vaughan Gething said he did not want to take a “whole-nation approach”, but that the restrictions would apply to people from “high incidence areas across the UK”.

“There’s no good reason to prevent someone from Devon, at this point in time, coming to visit a pre-booked holiday or trip to Pembrokeshire,” he said.

“So we are thinking about how we use something that is proportionate and deals with the reality of the threat that we face.”

He said the Welsh government is “actively considering” the measure and it has been discussed with First Minister Mark Drakeford.

The first minister previously called for Boris Johnson to introduce travel restrictions for people in areas of England under a postcode lockdown.

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People in Wales must not enter or leave an area subject to travel restrictions without a reasonable excuse.

But in an interview with BBC Wales, the UK prime minister said he did not want to impose such restrictions within the UK.

Andrew RT Davies, shadow health minister for the Welsh Conservatives, also argued there were “all sorts of questions” that would need answering before quarantine restrictions could be considered.

“Now if you start introducing such restrictions in Wales, does that mean then there’s a quid pro quo that England, Scotland and Northern Ireland start doing to Welsh residents?” he told BBC Wales.

“What about that engineer that has to come to a Welsh hospital to fix the cardiac machine from outside of Wales that could potentially be living in a hotspot in England?”