UK may see COVID lockdown ahead of Christmas: health official

UK may see COVID lockdown ahead of Christmas: health official

A top British health official cautioned that the country may impose restrictive COVID-19 precautions before Christmas, even as the country’s prime minister promised not to enact a lockdown.

During an appearance on the BBC Sunday, Health Secretary Sajid Javid cautioned there are “no guarantees” amid “uncertainty” of avoiding imminent precautions when asked if he would rule out a pre-Christmas “circuit breaker.”

“There are no guarantees in this pandemic,” he said on “The Andrew Marr Show.” “At this point, we just have to keep everything under review.”

“We are assessing the situation, it’s very fast-moving. We’ve seen with Omicron there’s a lot that we still don’t know about Omicron,” Javid added. “That’s the truth of the matter. The reality is there’s a lot of uncertainty.”

Javid said on the show that the Omicron variant accounts for about 80 percent of coronavirus infections in London and 60 percent of infections in London.

According to most recent government figures cited by the Guardian, 90,418 COVID-19 cases were reported Saturday in the UK, and 125 deaths within four weeks of a positive coronavirus test.

British Health Secretary Sajid Javid.
“The reality is there’s a lot of uncertainty,” British Health Secretary Sajid Javid said about the Omicron variant.
Jeff Overs/BBC via REUTERS
Worker tends to a COVID-19 patient.
Last week, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the country’s first Omicron death.
Adrian Dennis/AFP via Getty Images

Prime Minister Boris Johnson promised not to shut the country down just yet. But The Sun previously reported that plans are being prepared for a two-week, post-Christmas lockdown, allowing people to enjoy the holiday before bunkering down.

Mask and vaccine mandates have already been imposed in the country.

Javid’s warning comes after on Saturday protesters demonstrating against COVID-19 restrictions and vaccine mandates left several police officers injured in London.

It also comes after Prime Minister Johnson last week warned of a “tidal wave” of new COVID-19 variant infections as he announced the country’s first Omicron death.

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