Health Care

United Kingdom divided: Borders a possibility as nations choose own restrictions

United Kingdom divided: Borders a possibility as nations choose own restrictions”

"The Leader of the Opposition in the Welsh Parliament - Paul Davies MS - has rounded on the First Minister over a ban on people entering Wales from England, and the Labour Party's inability or unwillingness to publish comprehensive data proving that transmission rates are accelerating due to travel".

The ban on people visiting Wales from other areas of the United Kingdom with high levels of coronavirus will come into force from 6pm this evening.

First minister Mark Drakeford has said Wales will ban entry to people from areas of the United Kingdom with high levels of COVID-19 infections by Friday if Boris Johnson fails to impose UK-wide travel restrictions.

First Minister Mark Drakeford said his government had fallen out with the Prime Minister over his refusal to act on the travel ban.

Mr Drakeford's comments came after the Police Federation of England and Wales described the restrictions as "unenforceable" owing to the difficulty in identifying where people were travelling to and from.

The UK government's Welsh secretary has warned the first minister's travel restrictions plan risks "stirring division and confusion".

For those of us living in Cardiff, we can feel better knowing that Mr Drakeford is, "determined to keep Wales Safe".

The practices Mr Drakeford referred to were used to enforce Wales's "stay local" rule earlier in the pandemic, when travel within Wales was restricted to a five-mile radius without a reasonable excuse.

Mr Drakeford said: "People shouldn't be looking at the rules and asking themselves how can I get around the rule".

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"It's why we're taking this action now to give people a good period of time to understand that, if you did book a holiday in those parts of Wales, I'm afraid that holiday will now no longer be able to take place".

"There were a small number of people who weren't willing to do so and fixed penalty notices had to be applied".

"Number plates are one of the ways in which they are able to identify cars that are travelling long distances, but that won't be the only way".

He said: "We will police it the same as we policed the initial lockdown back in March, we didn't close the border, we didn't set up roadblocks along the border, we will have targetted police operations".

"I never wanted this to become an issue of the border and people travelling in and out of Wales", he told BBC Breakfast.

"There are exceptions as there are in the counties of Wales which are now in local lockdowns".

Engage - officers speak to people and try to establish their awareness and understanding of the situation.

It is not yet clear whether people will be issued with fines for breaking the rule.

Encourage - officers may need to guide individuals, suggesting they return home.

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