Scotland and Wales have imposed quarantine restrictions on travelers from Greece, according to government announcements.
Anyone arriving in Scotland from Greece will be required to isolate at home for 14 days, effective Thursday, September 3.
The government also announced that a ban on household gatherings will be implemented in three local authorities in the Greater Glasgow and Clyde areas for the next two weeks.
According to a report in the UK’s Guardian, Nicola Sturgeon, the First Minister of Scotland, the localised restrictions – which come into force at midnight on Tuesday and will affect an estimated 800,000 people – apply to those living in West Dunbartonshire, Glasgow and East Renfrewshire, where infection rates have risen in recent days.
Those resident in these three areas should not host people in their homes or visit someone else’s home, regardless of where they live, the first minister said. Members of different households can continue to meet outdoors, including in gardens.
The steps were taken due to a “significant rise” in cases of Covid-19 being brought into Scotland from people who have been to Greece.
Many new cases in Scotland and Wales have been traced to travelers returning from Greek island holidays, according to the Guardian’s report.
As a result the country has been being removed from the “travel corridor” exemption list on public health and safety grounds.
Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf said: “We are in the midst of a global pandemic and the situation in many countries can change suddenly.
“With Scotland’s relatively low infection rate, importation of new cases from Greece is a significant risk to public health.”
Scotland’s chief medical officer Dr Gregor Smith said: “There is a compelling public health risk around importation of the virus, especially given the number of imported cases linked to the Greek islands.
“The flow of travel between Scotland and Greece, and the behavior we have seen from some of those travelers, means that on public health grounds there is a strong case – supported by public health directors – to remove Greece from the exemption list.”
Welsh authorities have imposed similar restrictions on travelers arriving home to from Zakinthos. Wales’ Health Minister Vaughan Gething said there were six clusters of cases, amounting to 30 infections, linked to flights from the Greek island.
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