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Iran Press TV

Nicola Sturgeon orders national lockdown in Scotland

Iran Press TV

Monday, 04 January 2021 3:53 PM

Scotland's First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, has announced a nationwide lockdown beginning at midnight Tuesday (January 05).

The lockdown will last until the end of January and people living in Scotland will be legally required to stay at home. Schools will be closed until early February.

"It is no exaggeration to say that I am more concerned about the situation we face now than I have been at any time since March last year [at the beginning of the pandemic]", Sturgeon told the Scottish Parliament in Holyrood (Edinburgh).

In her address to the Scottish Parliament on Monday (January 04), Sturgeon said the remarkable transmissibility of the new and potent Covid-19 strain – popularly referred to as the "British Virus" – means that Scotland's current Tier 4 restrictions may no longer be enough to bring the "R number" (the rate at which coronavirus spreads) below one.

Sturgeon, who is also the leader of the pro-independence Scottish National Party (SNP), said that bringing the R number to below one would require conditions "much closer to the lockdown of last March".

The First Minister warned the Scottish Parliament that failure to act could result in the National Health Service (NHS) in Scotland getting "overrun" with Covid-19 patients within "three or four weeks".

The decision to order a national lockdown in Scotland once again places Sturgeon's leadership centre stage in the management of the coronavirus pandemic on the British Isles.

The Tory government in London has been continually playing catch up with Sturgeon since the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020.

Underscoring this recurring pattern, Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, is set to make a televised address at 20:00 GMT on Monday (January 04) where he is expected to introduce further restrictive measures to contain the rapid spread of the so-called "British Virus".

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