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UK puts military on hold as Boris Johnson says tide can change in 12 weeks – Raw Story

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On Thursday, the UK put 20,000 soldiers on standby for the coronavirus crisis as dozens of underground stations closed in London and Queen Elizabeth left the city for Windsor Castle.

As the coronavirus epidemic is spreading worldwide, governments, businesses and investors are grappling with the greatest public health crisis since the 1918 flu pandemic.

Against a backdrop of panic buying in supermarkets and the sharp drop in the pound sterling in decades, the 93 year old queen sent a message to the nation as it moved from central London to Windsor with her 98-year-old husband Prince Philip.

“At times like these, I remember that the history of our nation was forged by people and communities who came together to work together,” said Elizabeth.

“Many of us will have to find new ways to stay in touch with each other and make sure our loved ones are safe. I am sure we are up to this challenge. Rest assured that my family and I are ready to play our part. “

As a sign of growing fears about the impact of the crisis, the Bank of England cut interest rates to just 0.1%, its second emergency rate fell in just over a week and pledged an additional £ 200 billion in bond purchases.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said at a now-scheduled coronavirus press conference that Britain could reverse the epidemic in the next 12 weeks.

“At the moment, the disease is evolving in a way that does not seem to respond to our interventions yet,” he said.

“I believe that a combination of the measures we are asking the public to take and better tests, scientific progress, will allow us to get by in the next 12 weeks.”

However, he said he could not say the epidemic would be on a downward slope by the end of June. It was possible but not certain.

Britain has so far reported 144 deaths from coronavirus and 3,269 confirmed cases, but UK scientific advisers say more than 50,000 people may already have been infected.

London lockdown?

Amid rumors that travel to and from London will be limited, Johnson’s spokesperson told reporters that there were “no prospects” of imposing restrictions.

But when asked about London later at his press conference, Johnson said that compliance with the government’s social distancing recommendations was fragmentary and that more might need to be done in the capital, although it didn’t did not specify what.

The government has declared that the police are still responsible for maintaining law and order and that there are no plans to use the army for this purpose, although they have notified military reservists official.

London’s transport authority has said it will close up to 40 underground stations until further notice and cut other services, including buses and trains.

“People should never travel unless they are really, really” London Mayor Sadiq Khan said.

As panic purchases continued and supermarket shelves were exposed, an industry source said that retailers were waiting for police support. The government has announced that it is relaxing competition laws to allow cooperation between supermarkets to ensure adequate supplies for the public.

Britain is facing a “massive shortage” of ventilators that will be needed to treat critically ill patients with coronavirus, after failing to invest enough in intensive care equipment, said a major ventilator manufacturer.

Johnson said Britain is in talks to buy a game-changing coronavirus antibody test if it works, and that scientists are already making progress in finding drugs to fight the disease.

Photo: Boris Johnson (Andrew Parsons / Parsons Media)

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