Don’t tell me what to do! Boris hits back as Sturgeon demands end to travel ‘loophole’

Scotland is ‘determined’ to enforce border rules says Freeman

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The Scottish Government has broken ranks with Westminster on its quarantine policy and is now suffering the consequences of a loophole. While those arriving into England from coronavirus ‘red list’ countries must spend 10-days in hotel quarantine, all arrivals to Scotland must spend the period at a managed isolation facility.

Its means anyone who flies to England from an amber list country but then heads north of the border avoids a £1750 stay in one of Scotland’s quarantine hotels.

The SNP demanded over the weekend that any arrivals into England planning to head to Scotland should be placed in an isolation facility before they are allowed to travel north.

But No10 has hit back at the suggestion and said policing Scotland’s coronavirus rules is a matter for Holyrood.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said this afternoon: “If you enter England, we’ve set out the detail of the quarantine policy.

“If travellers arrive in England from a red list country and wish to continue travelling to Scotland they first have to complete 10-days managed quarantine in England.

“If a traveller arrives in England from an amber list country and wishes to continue to Scotland they will be able to do so but will then have to follow Scottish quarantine rules on entry.”

Asked if it was a responsibility of the Scottish Government to deal with quarantine for those arriving via England, the No10 official indicated the matter was for the SNP to deal with.

He said those from non-red list countries “will be able to continue their journey” to Scotland where they then “fall under Scottish quarantine rules”.

On Sunday Scotland’s Transport Secretary Michael Matheson said the “loophole” could “potentially undermine the public health approach” adopted by the SNP.

“It is a loophole that has been created by the UK Government and its failure to take action on the basis of the clinical, expert advice that has been provided on this matter.”

He added: “The simplest and the safest approach to dealing with this is to have a comprehensive system in place.

“If the UK Government aren’t prepared to do that, we could resolve the issue by simply ensuring those who are transferring on to Scotland have to go to a quarantine facility near to the airport they arrive at in England.”

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon today said she would try to force Boris Johnson to copy her strict quarantine rules.

She said she would push for the UK Government “to adopt more comprehensive measures”.

Ms Sturgeon added: “The reason why we have decided to adopt stricter rules is because we think it is important to go as far as we can.”

More to follow…

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