Anger from British tourists returning from Spain to new two-week quarantine. Spain insists epidemic is under control
British tourists flying home on Sunday from holidays in Spain reacted angrily to the UK government’s abrupt decision to impose a two-week coronavirus quarantine on everyone travelling from there.
The move to take Spain off a safe-travel list was announced late on Saturday and took effect from midnight (2300 GMT on Saturday), leaving travellers with no time to dodge it or plan ahead.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s government was slammed for its handling of the measure, taken as Spain sees a surge in COVID-19 cases.
The foreign secretary, Dominic Raab, has said the government will not apologize for its snap decision to order tourists returning from Spain to quarantine, saying further spread could risk another lockdown in the UK.
Raab said the government had to take “swift, decisive action” when the data from Spain showed a surge in infections right across the country. Overnight, the UK imposed snap new restrictions on holidaymakers returning from Spain on Saturday night, meaning those who return must quarantine for two weeks.
Spain’s foreign ministry has insisted the coronavirus epidemic is under control, after the British government imposed a 14-day quarantine on all travellers returning from the country in response to a surge in new cases there.
Hospitals are coping well with the increase in infections and more than half of new cases are asymptomatic, the ministry said, adding that outbreaks in Catalonia and Aragon should soon be brought under control.