CONTAMINATION: The government indicated that “reciprocity measures” would be taken on Travellers from the United Kingdom
The United Kingdom drew the wrath of Paris on Thursday by announcing a mandatory two-week quarantine for people from France, due to a deterioration in the health situation. France immediately indicated that a “reciprocity measure” would be put in place.
The British decision will be effective from Saturday. It also concerns several other countries and islands, following a worrying upsurge in the coronavirus epidemic in these territories. “Statistics show that we must remove France, the Netherlands, Monaco, Malta […] from our list of travel corridors to keep infection rates down,” Transport Minister Grant Shapps said on Twitter. “If you arrive in the UK from one of these destinations after 4 hours on Saturday, you will have to isolate yourself for fourteen days,” he says.
500,000 Britons on holiday in France
Paris regretted Thursday the British decision to re-impose a quarantine on travellers from France due to an increase in coronavirus contaminations in France and announced in reaction a “reciprocity measure”. The decision of the British authorities is a “decision that we regret and which will lead to a measure of reciprocity, hoping for a return to normal as soon as possible”, warned the French Secretary for European Affairs Clément Beaune on his Twitter account.
— Clement Beaune (@CBeaune) August 13, 2020
This measure should also hit hard the many Britons currently on vacation in France or in the other European countries concerned and could cause an exodus of holidaymakers wishing to escape this constraint on their return. It is estimated that around half a million Britons are currently on vacation in France.
It comes as the monitoring indicators for the Covid-19 epidemic in France “continue to deteriorate”, the Directorate General of Health (DGS) said on Thursday, with a number of new confirmed cases which “is steadily increasing”. Over the past 24 hours, 2,669 new cases have been detected (against 2,524 on Wednesday), she noted in her daily update.
An increase in the fine for not wearing a mask
London had initially imposed a quarantine on all travellers arriving on its soil, before finally opting for the creation of “travel corridors” exempting certain countries of origin from the obligation to isolate themselves. The quarantine was reintroduced at the end of July for passengers from Spain. The move had taken airlines by surprise, as well as thousands of Britons about to go on vacation.
London has also announced the reopening in England of casinos, bowling alleys and outdoor ice rinks. Theatres and performance venues will also be able to reopen by maintaining social distancing between customers. Along with these reductions, the government announced the doubling of the fine imposed on those who “repeatedly override the rules for wearing a mask”, to a maximum of 3,200 pounds (3,500 euros).
New rules will also target those who “organize rave parties or other illegal gatherings of more than 30 people”. “We cannot be complacent,” said Prime Minister Boris Johnson, as the UK is currently registering more than 1,000 new positive cases per day.