Countries added to red list to protect UK from variants of concern

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Countries added to red list to protect UK from variants of concern


  • Travel bans implemented for visitors from the Philippines, Pakistan, Kenya and Bangladesh from 4 a.m. on Friday April 9
  • UK, Irish and third-country nationals with residence rights (including long-term visa holders) from these countries will be required to self-isolate in a government-approved hotel quarantine facility for 10 days.
  • move follows new data showing increased risk of importing variants of concern

The Philippines, Pakistan, Kenya and Bangladesh have been added to England’s red list to protect the country against new variants of the coronavirus (COVID-19), at a critical time for the vaccination program.

With more than 30 million vaccines delivered in the United Kingdom So far, the additional restrictions will help reduce the risk of new variants – such as those first identified in South Africa (AT) and Brazil – entry into England. So far, surveillance has revealed that few cases of AT The variants were identified as being imported from Europe, most of them coming from other parts of the world.

Starting at 4 a.m. on Friday April 9, international visitors who have left or transited through the Philippines, Pakistan, Kenya and Bangladesh in the previous 10 days will be refused entry into England. Only British and Irish citizens, or those with a right of residence in the United Kingdom (including long-term visa holders), will be allowed entry and must remain in a government-approved quarantine facility for 10 days. They will also need to arrive at a designated port. No direct flight ban from these countries will be in place, but passengers are advised to check their travel plans before leaving for England.

During their stay, passengers will be required to take a coronavirus test on or before Day 2 and on or after Day 8, and they will not be allowed to shorten their quarantine period upon receipt of a negative test result. They will also not be able to end their managed quarantine earlier through the Test to Release program.

The Joint Biosafety Center (JBC) produces risk assessments for the spread of variants of international concern. These risk assessments cover a range of factors for each country, including:

  • monitoring and sequencing capacity assessment
  • available genome monitoring and sequencing data
  • evidence of community transmission in the country of COVID-19 variants
  • proof of the export of new variants to the United Kingdom or other countries
  • travel connectivity with the United Kingdom

The government has always made it clear that it will take decisive action if necessary to contain the virus and has added these destinations to the Red List to protect public health.

The government continues to work with the hospitality industry to ensure it is ready to meet any increased demand.

British nationals currently in Red List countries should use the available trade options if they wish to return to England. The trade routes which will allow British and Irish nationals and residents to return to England continue to function.

British nationals of these countries should check the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) travel advice and follow local advice. the FCDO will continue to offer tailor-made consular assistance to UK nationals in need of support abroad 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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