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Drakeford warns again of reimporting Covid as he joins four-nation talks on foreign travel

29 Apr 2021 2 minutes Read
Inset: First Minister Mark Drakeford. Picture by the Welsh Government.

The leaders of Wales, Scotland, England and Northern Ireland are set for four-nation talks on resuming foreign travel.

The three first ministers will meet with Minister for the Cabinet Office, Michael Gove, to discuss lifting the UK Government’s restrictions on foreign travel.

Earlier this month Boris Johnson said he was “hopeful” about restarting international travel on May 17.

Wales’ First Minister, Mark Drakeford, has repeatedly warned against lifting restrictions too soon and a repeat of last year when new coronavirus mutations were allowed into the country.

“I will repeat again this evening to Mr Gove my view that the biggest danger we now face is the reimportation of coronavirus from other parts of the world,” he said.

“We’ve done such a fantastic job here in Wales to get us to where we are today.

“Surely the last thing we want is to go headlong into international travel, have people go into parts of the world where coronavirus is in much more vivid circulation, where there are new variants that we don’t know anything about, and then to find that coming back here and undermining everything we have done.”

‘Understanding’

Scotland’s Nicola Sturgeon also recently urged that “too lax a position on international travel” by the UK Government should not halt progress in tackling coronavirus.

UK officials are understood to be in talks with the EU over reopening travel routes through the summer holidays.

Some countries such as Greece have warned that proof of vaccination will be required to travel.

The Greek government said that it understood that a UK health certificate will become available.

“We accept only official documents issued by the competent British authorities that prove the vaccination particulars,” they told the Times.

“If someone has documents that are not issued by anyone, we mandate a negative test.

“Our understanding is that a health pass will be forthcoming.”

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