Friday photo of a group of masked passengers arriving in London from Paris at the Eurostar St Pancras terminal in London.
Aug 14, 2020. . / Peter Nicholls (PETER NICHOLLS /)

By William James

LONDON, Aug 13 (.) – The United Kingdom will impose a 14-day quarantine on all arrivals from France from Saturday, considering that the rates of infection by COVID-19 in this country are too high.

The British government, which fears a second wave of the new coronavirus, also added the Netherlands, Malta and three other countries to its quarantine list. Spain and Belgium have already been on the blacklist for weeks.

« The data shows that we need to remove France, the Netherlands, Monaco, Malta, Turks and Caicos Islands and Aruba from our list of #coronavirus Travel Corridors to contain infection rates, » Transport Minister Grant Shapps said on Twitter .

« If you arrive in the UK after 0400 on Saturday from these destinations, you will need to self-isolate for 14 days. »

France reported more than 2,500 new cases of COVID-19 infection for the second day in a row on Thursday, a level not seen since mid-April, when the country was in the midst of one of the strictest lockdowns in Europe. [nL8N2FF702]

The re-imposition of quarantine conditions is hitting Britain’s favorite holiday destinations in midsummer, at a time when the tourism industry is struggling to survive.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said his government would be ruthless in imposing new restrictions on arrivals because of the danger of importing new cases of the virus. [nL8N2FF6Q1]

This strategy contrasts with that of earlier this year, when it was criticized for being too slow to shut down the country at the beginning of the pandemic, when many cases are believed to have stemmed from the return of tourists returning from Italy. The UK’s quarantine policy began in June.

For UK holidaymakers, France is the second most visited country in Europe after Spain, to which London has also applied a quarantine.

(Additional information from Sarah Young in London and Mathieu Rosemain in Paris; edited by Kate Holton and Grant McCool; translated by Tomás Cobos)