Scotland will impose a “managed quarantine” on all international arrivals into the country, Nicola Sturgeon has announced, as she vowed to clamp down on Covid mutations crossing the border.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson last week unveiled a 10-day hotel quarantine for arrivals to the UK from 30 countries most “at risk” of carrying new Covid strains.
But Sturgeon warned the measures did not go far enough in efforts to ward off emerging variants, and called for Johnson to introduce a “more comprehensive” set of restrictions.
Following a four-nations call last week, both Sturgeon and Welsh first minister Mark Drakeford said they would initially follow the UK government approach before laying down additional restrictions.
“I can therefore confirm today that we intend to introduce a managed quarantine requirement for anyone who arrives directly into Scotland, regardless of which country they have come from,” Sturgeon said this afternoon.
“As we continue to suppress the virus within our own borders and increase the protection of the vaccine, it is essential that we also guard against fresh importation of cases from overseas,” she said.
“This is particularly important as the virus mutates and new, more infectious and potentially more severe variants emerge. And as we look ahead, we must learn from past experience.”
The first minister added that although she could not prevent arrivals to England from travelling into Scotland, she hoped the other administrations would work with the Scottish government to reduce the spread of the virus.
England’s new hotel quarantine measures are expected to be introduced from 15 February. It is not yet clear when Scotland’s travel restrictions will be introduced.