Yvette Cooper has called on the UK Government to expand the hotel quarantine system, and warned that it is "raising expectations" about the prospect of summer holidays that it "may not be able to meet."
On BBC Radio Four's Today Programme, the former Shadow Foreign Secretary appealed for tighter border measures, saying: "we should also be looking at testing at the airport, in the way that South Korea does... as well as Australia and New Zealand, which have more expanded hotel quarantine systems."
Cooper blamed people travelling from South America on indirect flights for the introduction of the 'Brazil variant': "They will have travelled [to the UK] by indirect flights. But it was over a month until the hotel quarantine system was introduced. Bear in mind, only 1 per cent of international travellers are covered by the hotel quarantine system."
She also derided ministers for apparently "encouraging" the public to book holidays – despite leisure travel currently being illegal.
"At the moment, the Government is encouraging people to think that summer holidays are possible, and international travel is going to return," she said. "The Home Secretary, when we pressed her on this, said it’s ‘too soon’ for people to be booking holidays."
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