UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson took the podium in front of an almost empty parliament amid social distancing rules in London on Monday afternoon. The Prime Minister addressed the room to explain the new measures put in place by the government and discuss how the UK will move forward regarding COVID-19.
Opening with positive data, he told listeners that the UK has successfully «cut the... Еще reproduction rate from between 2.6 and 2.8 in April to between 0.5 and 0.9 today. The number of COVID patients in hospital has fallen by over a third since Easter Sunday.»
A message that was repeated throughout the address was that there is a need to move carefully and slowly to avoid a further spread of the virus. «Our challenge now is to find a way forward that preserves our hard-won gains while easing the burden of the lockdown,» explained Johnson.
The government is now advising the use of face-covering materials. «We would now advise people to wear a cloth face-covering in enclosed spaces where social distancing is not always possible,» said Johnson. «But this does not, and I must stress this, this does not mean wearing medical face masks, 2R or FFP3, which must be reserved for people who need them,» he went on to say.
Regarding the reopening of the country, Boris explained that «this will not happen until the 1st of June at the earliest. But we may then be in a position to start the phased reopening of shops.» Before adding that «we are publishing guidance on how schools might reopen safely. Step two could also include allowing cultural and sporting events behind closed doors.»
In total the Prime Minister spoke for slightly more than his allotted ten minutes before taking questions from the opposition. He will be back on British TV screens at 19:00 local time (18:00 GMT) when he will hold a press conference with the government's advisers Chris Whitty and Patrick Vallance.
Over 220,000 people have been infected with coronavirus nationwide, and there have been 32,065 related deaths thus far, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
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