Hours after Greece imposed a strict lockdown nationwide, the UK followed suit in an effort to combat the spread of the coronavirus.
Speaking from Downing Street on Monday evening, PM Boris Johnson said the country faced a “moment of national emergency” and staying at home was necessary to protect the National Health Service, save lives and tackle “the biggest threat this country has faced for decades.”
Under the terms explained by Johnson in his televised address on Monday, people will be allowed to leave home only for the following reasons:
- shopping for necessities, as infrequently as possible;
- one form of exercise a day, such as running or cycling, alone or with household member
- for medical or care needs, for example to help a vulnerable person;
- travelling to and from work, but only if you cannot work from home.
Meeting friends, shopping for anything beyond essentials, and gathering in crowds are now banned.
As of Monday, some 335 people have died from the virus in the United Kingdom.
Some 83,945 people in the UK have been tested for coronavirus, with 6,650 testing positive. However, the true number of cases will be far higher as tests are mostly carried out only on people who have been hospitalized with symptoms of the virus.