Flights From Coronavirus Epicentres China, Iran, Italy STILL Landing In UK

A member of staff, wearing a facemask for protective measures, disembarks from an Air China airbus carrying 500.000 protective masks at the Athens international airport, on March 21, 2020, as part of aid measures from China, to help the country and Europe to fight against the spread of the Covid-19, …
ARIS MESSINIS/AFP via Getty Images

The British government is still allowing flights to arrive at the nation’s airports from the countries where coronavirus infection is most widespread.

The British government has refused to ban air travel from coronavirus hotspots, allowing thousands of people to enter the country from coronavirus stricken countries including China, Iran, and Italy, despite the local lockdown measures imposed by Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Flights from Rome and Beijing are still being permitted to arrive in London every day. Iran Air flights from Tehran arrive in the British capital three times a week as well, even though the country has the third-highest death toll from the virus in the world.

On Saturday, two flights from Beijing and a flight from Shanghai arrived at Heathrow airport and a fourth landed at Gatwick airport.

Another flight from Iran is due to arrive in the capital this afternoon, according to The Times.

A spokesman for the government defended the decision to forego travel bans on inflected countries, claiming: “There is no evidence that interventions like closing borders or travel bans would have any effect on the spread of infection. Those who return to the UK would be advised to reduce their social contact by following the same social distancing measures as the rest of the country.”

The United Kingdom has refused to follow the lead of the United States and even the European Union, which have enacted travel bans during the coronavirus outbreak.

People arriving in the United Kingdom are being asked to self-isolate– yet there is no way for the government to ensure that they do.

The director of National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) in the United States, infectious disease expert Dr Anthony S. Fauci, has said that President Donald Trump’s decision to ban travel from China and Europe was a key element in reducing the spread of the virus in America.

“The two pillars, the two elements of our capability to contain the infection and the surge of infections in this country rely on two things: keeping infections from coming from without in. We’ve been very successful in doing that with China and with Europe,” Dr Fauci explained.

“Our shutting off travel from China and, more recently, travel from Europe, has gone a long way to not seeding very, very intensively the virus in our country,” he added.

Follow Kurt on Twitter at @KurtZindulka

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