Coronavirus latest news: International travel should resume slowly, scientist warns

International travel should reopen slowly, with any traffic light system having the potential to be “leaky” to Covid variants, a senior scientist has said.

Professor Robin Shattock, head of mucosal infection and immunity at Imperial College London’s department of medicine, said an ideal scenario would be for people to quarantine when they return from any country – though this was unlikely to be seen as a practical option.

He said it was possible coronavirus will become “much more of a fairly trivial infection” for most people while it was still uncertain whether the entire population would need to be vaccinated again each winter.

The travel taskforce set up by Boris Johnson is due to report shortly, with many expecting it to propose a traffic light approach.

This ranks countries red, amber or green depending on infection rates and the prevalence of Covid variants in overseas destinations.

​​Follow the latest updates below.

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5:55AM

Argentina’s leader tests positive for coronavirus

Argentine President Alberto Fernandez has tested positive for coronavirus, is waiting for the result to be confirmed and is in good spirits despite having a light fever, the first-term Peronist leader tweeted on Saturday.

“I am in good physical condition,” the president, who turned 62 on Friday, said in a tweet. He had received Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine against coronavirus earlier this year.

Argentina's president is dealing with his own case of the virus

Argentina’s president is dealing with his own case of the virus

Credit:
ESTEBAN COLLAZO/AFP

“I would have liked to end my birthday without this news, but I am in good spirits,” Fernandez tweeted.

He is in isolation, under Covid-19 protocols, but remains on the job.

5:42AM

What will Boris Johnson announce on Monday?

Boris Johnson is set to update the country on Monday about the next steps out of lockdown.

The Prime Minister is expected to announce whether England can move to the next stage of reopening – and he could  give an update on reopening borders and Covid passports.

He could also confirm if hairdressers and beer gardens will be allowed to open on April 12.

Here’s what we know about his announcement: What will Boris Johnson announce on Monday? The options for easing lockdown, travel and Covid passports

4:10AM

‘Huge demand’ for staycations reopening

Staycation businesses are reporting “huge demand” for their planned reopening on April 12.

That is the earliest date that self-contained accommodation providers and outdoor visitor attractions could be permitted to welcome back customers under Boris Johnson’s road map for easing the coronavirus lockdown in England.

Outdoor visitor attractions such as theme parks and zoos are also preparing to reopen.

The Prime Minister is expected to make a statement on Monday in relation to the potential lifting of restrictions in England on April 12.

Self-contained holiday accommodation reopened in Wales on March 27 for people living within the country.

No date has been announced for when holiday accommodation could be used in Scotland or Northern Ireland.

2:28AM

Scientist says international travel should resume slowly

International travel should reopen slowly, with any traffic light system having the potential to be “leaky” to Covid variants, a senior scientist has said.

Professor Robin Shattock, head of mucosal infection and immunity at Imperial College London’s department of medicine, said an ideal scenario would be for people to quarantine when they return from any country – though this was unlikely to be seen as a practical option.

He said it was possible coronavirus will become “much more of a fairly trivial infection” for most people while it was still uncertain whether the entire population would need to be vaccinated again each winter.

The travel taskforce set up by Boris Johnson is due to report shortly, with many expecting it to propose a traffic light approach.

This ranks countries red, amber or green depending on infection rates and the prevalence of Covid variants in overseas destinations.

1:53AM

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