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Tue, 29 September 2020

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Belgium, Andorra and Bahamas added to UK’s coronavirus quarantine list after spike in cases

Belgium, Andorra and Bahamas added to UK’s coronavirus quarantine list after spike in cases

The move was first announced by the Welsh Government. (PA images)

2 min read

People arriving in the UK from Belgium, Andorra and the Bahamas will have to enter coronavirus quarantine following a spike in cases, the Government has announced.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps confirmed that arrivals from the three destinations will have to spend 14 days in self-isolation, in the latest additions to the UK’s quarantine list.

All three had been exempt from the requirement since an easing of the restrictions last month.

But Mr Shapps tweeted: "Data shows we need to remove Andorra, Belgium and the Bahamas from our list of Coronavirus Travel Corridors in order to keep infection rates DOWN."

The Foreign Office has meanwhile updated its travel advice to warn against all-but essential travel to the three destinations.

The latest data from the European Centre for Disease Control (ECDC) show that Belgium’s 14-day number of Covid-19 cases per 100,000 people is 49.2 — well above the UK’s 14.3.

Cases in Belgium have quadrupled since mid-July, and Andorra has seen a five-fold rise over the same period.

The weekly case rate in the Bahamas peaked at 78.6 last week — up sharply from the 3.1 posted in mid-July.

The move was first announced by the Welsh Government, with Wales giving those returning less time to do so before the changes kick in than the UK Government.

The UK administration said the changes would come into force “from 4am Saturday 8 August 2020”, and followed “a significant change in both the level and pace of confirmed cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) in all 3 destinations“.

But Welsh health minister Vaughan Gethin said: “Anyone who arrives in Wales from Andorra, the Bahamas and Belgium or who has been in any of those countries or territories during the last 14 days will be required to isolate for 14 days as of tomorrow [Friday].”

A Welsh Government spokesperson said: “The four nations of the UK made this decision together and we have amended our regulations.

“We understand similar changes will be made in the other nations."

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