All arrivals in the UK - including returning Britons - will be quarantined for two weeks and face £1,000 fines or deportation if they fail to do so under dramatic plans that could effectively suspend foreign travel for the length of the coronavirus crisis.
The controversial move will be introduced from June, however key workers will be exempt, as will travellers from Ireland. It is not clear how the measure will work in practice and who would be categorised as 'key workers' and therefore be excused from the requirement.
Ministers also faced questions about why a similar measure had not been put into place earlier, with 15,000 travellers arriving at UK airports every day in April with no screening, including from virus hotspots like China and the USA.
Piers Morgan tweeted: 'So we're doing this now, three months after the @WHO declared COVID-19 a global health emergency.. after we've let 100s of 1000s fly in from corona-ravaged countries with no checks... & after 55k+ people have already died in the UK? What a sick joke.'
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