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Britain tightens restrictions; Netherlands has banned all flights from UK; those waiting to travel in New Year are worried

DUBLIN: The Netherlands has banned all passenger flights from the UK following the detection of the new and more contagious coronavirus that is spreading in the UK.

The new strain of the virus is the most contagious in Britain since the discovery of the COVID-19 virus. Thousands of people are being infected with this new variant of the virus every day. In some parts of the UK, all non-emergency treatments are being replaced by treating COVID patients.

The new strain of the virus appears to be 70% more infectious than the normal version of the disease. Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced Tier 4 restrictions in London and Southeastern England yesterday evening on the recommendation of the Health Advisory Council.

Hours after Britain announced the new restrictions, British flights to the Netherlands were banned from 6am local time this morning from 6am to 1 January.

“An infectious mutation of the COVID-19 virus is circulating in the United Kingdom. It is said to spread more easily and faster and is more difficult to detect,” the health ministry said in a statement.

But the government of Ireland continues to push for tougher restrictions after the Christmas weekend. The British Prime Minister warned travellers from the UK not to fly to Ireland because it could lead to the spread of the virus, but the Irish Government gave people time to celebrate Christmas.

The Department of Health has confirmed that 17 people have died of COVID-19 infection in Northern Ireland in the past day alone. In the last 24 hours, 640 new cases of the virus have been reported. But not only has the Department of Health not announced its support for the politicians’ decision, the group led by Tony Holohan is also in favor of more restrictions.

Many people are waiting to book a ticket through the UK to go home for the Christmas holidays. There are now concerns that the UK’s alert, especially in London, could adversely affect travellers. At the same time, Qatar Airways from Ireland has announced that it will begin service to the Gulf after Christmas.

The Netherlands announced a ban on flights to and from the UK because even the British government’s explanation for the new strain of the virus was so extreme.

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