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Country hit with tough new rules after Xmas



Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland will begin a Boxing Day crackdown in a bid to stop rising Covid cases, while Prime Minister Boris Johnson is set to weigh things up for the rest of the country on Monday, The Sun reports.The lockdown comes after dedicated National Health Service staff continued to rollout vaccines on Christmas Day in a bid to protect more people.A string of hugely positive studies show Omicron is milder than other strains, with the first official UK report revealing the risk of hospitalisation is 50 to 70 per cent lower than with Delta.Covid booster jabs protect against Omicron and offer the best chance to get through the pandemic, health officials have repeatedly said.The Sun’s Jabs Army campaign is helping get the vital extra vaccines in Brits’ arms to ward off the need for any new restrictions.WalesThe rule of six returns in Wales from today, with only half a dozen people allowed to meet in pubs, cinemas and restaurants.Two metre social distancing is also required in public premises and offices, as nightclubs close their doors ahead of New Year’s Eve.The restrictions, which come into force from 6am, are a revised version of alert level two and were announced by the Welsh government earlier this week.ScotlandScotland has also reintroduced harsh measures from today for large events, instructing people to keep one metre distance from one another.Crowds will also be limited to 100 people standing indoors, 200 people sitting indoors and 500 people outdoors.The following day, only three households will be able to socialise at indoor and outdoor venues, including bars, restaurants, theatres, cinemas and gyms, with one metre social distancing.Table service is also making a comeback in places where alcohol is served.Northern IrelandThose in Northern Ireland will also be slapped with restrictions after celebrating Christmas, as nightclubs shut and indoor standing events are banned.Only three separate households will be permitted to get together, while parties of up to six people can gather in pubs, bars and restaurants.If from the same household, ten people can mingle in public spaces, but only table service will be available.A two-metre social distancing rule will be in place in public premises and offices.EnglandQuestions continue to swirl over possible restrictions in England as the Prime Minister is set to evaluate the rules tomorrow.Among the proposals being considered is a two-week circuit-breaker, which would include a ban on meeting friends and family indoors.This could include plans that will prevent Brits meeting others indoors except for work purposes.Pubs and restaurants would be limited to outdoor service only if the scheme is given the green light.Other reports suggest Mr Johnson has been presented with a range of options for “plan C”, ranging from “mild guidance to nudge people, right through to lockdown”.He will be watching hospital admission rates in the capital before considering any further restrictions.Mr Johnson is said to be ready to implement Covid rules at short notice if needed as daily infection rates reached six figures for the first time this week in the UK.On December 22, 386 patients were admitted for the virus — the highest number in a single day since February.Covid admissions peaked in January when 977 Brits were admitted in London.But as cases rise, health experts and ministers are now demanding that the government distinguishes between people who are being admitted to hospital “with” or “for” Covid.Despite concerns, the PM has vowed to keep schools open in January despite the spread of Omicron.He reportedly told Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi that he is “absolutely determined” to send kids back to school in the New Year, but the pair are said to be discussing the issue almost daily.They are said to believe that education is the government‘s “number one priority” and that schools closing is “not something being considered.”A source close to the Education Secretary told The Sunday Times, “There is a shared commitment across government to make sure they stay open.”This article originally appeared on The Sun and was reproduced with permission

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