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COVID-19: Boris Johnson ‘very optimistic’, all coronavirus restrictions to end in England on June 21 | Political news




Prime Minister Boris Johnson is “very optimistic” that he will be able to remove all coronavirus restrictions in England by June 21 as part of his four-step plan to lift the lockdown.

Under his roadmap to facilitate COVID measures, the Prime Minister hopes that “all legal limits to social contact can be removed” within the framework of the last of these four stages, which will arrive on June 21 at the earliest.

Asked about his confidence in achieving this goal, Mr Johnson said on Tuesday: ‘I have high hopes, but obviously nothing can be guaranteed and it all depends on how we continue to be careful and follow the guidelines. at each step.

“This is why it is so important to proceed in the prudent way that we are.

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“I think people understand that, they can see the logic of what we’re trying to do.

“But, really, because of the immense possibilities now offered by the roll-out of vaccination, because science has given us this way of creating a whole shield around our population, we can really look at this date of June 21 with a certain optimism.

“I am very optimistic that we can make it happen.”

Some Tory MPs have complained that the Prime Minister’s roadmap to lifting the lockdown, starting with all students returning to school on March 8, does not remove the restrictions quickly enough.

Meanwhile, some scientists have expressed skepticism that Mr Johnson can remove all COVID restrictions from June 21.

But Mr Johnson, speaking on Tuesday during a visit to a south London school, said his plan had set the “right” pace to ease restrictions – with a five-week gap between each of the four stages lifting of measures.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson meets with library teachers on a visit to Sedgehill School in Lewisham, south-east London, to see preparations for the students' return to school.  Photo date: Tuesday, February 23, 2021.
Boris Johnson met teachers at a south London school ahead of all students returning from March 8

“Some people will say we are going to go too fast, others will say we are going too slow,” he said.

“I think the balance is right, I think it’s a cautious but irreversible approach, which I think people want to see.

“And the reason for this discrepancy is that it gives us time to consider the impact of each of the changes, of each of the relaxations, of the openings that we make.

“Getting children back to school – extremely important for the country – we need time to assess what this does to the disease, the prevalence of COVID.

“And then again, when you look at the April 12 openings, you have to look at the impact of that – what the non-essential trade does, the open-air hospitality opening, etc.

“You add to the risk budget all the time and you need time to see the impact of that. So we think it’s a sensible approach, it’s a conservative approach.”

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He added: “But, also, I think people can see that this is happening in an irreversible way and we open up on June 21 in a way that I don’t think people would have really believed possible without the deployment of. vaccinations.

“It was these vaccinations, this massive program, led by the NHS, that made all the difference.”

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‘It’s important that people play by the rules’

Earlier on Tuesday, Health Secretary Matt Hancock warned the timeline for unlocking coronavirus restrictions would not be sped up – and could even be slowed down because ministers remain “vigilant” against infection rates.

He told Sky News that ministers were “absolutely determined” to get out of England’s third national lockdown “as quickly and safely as possible, but not faster”.

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