Red list flights ban is ‘morally wrong’ because it risks sparking ‘travel apartheid’, Archbishop of Canterbury says
- Justin Welby has criticised the UK’s red list ban on eleven African countries
- He said we need to find ‘fair approaches’ as it’s ‘morally wrong’ to punish nations
- Travellers from African countries coming to UK have to quarantine upon arrival
Bans on flights from red list countries are a form of ‘travel apartheid’, the Archbishop of Canterbury said yesterday.
Justin Welby criticised the UK’s red list ban on eleven African countries as ‘morally wrong and self-defeating’.
His comments came as the World Health Organisation (WHO) and top scientists hit out at travel restrictions as ‘pointless’ and ‘too late’ as ‘Omicron is already everywhere’.
Justin Welby criticised the UK’s red list ban on eleven African countries as ‘morally wrong and self-defeating’ (file image)
Currently, travellers from African countries seeking to enter the UK have to quarantine upon arrival under measures designed to minimise the spread of the latest variant.
‘We must find fair and effective approaches for those who are vaccinated and tested to enter the UK… we cannot have “travel apartheid”,’ Mr Welby said. ‘It is also morally wrong – and self-defeating – to punish nations for being transparent when they discover new Covid variants,’ he added.
It came as Dr Hans Kluge, the WHO’s regional director for Europe, said: ‘Disease outbreaks are contained at their source, not at their borders.’
Meanwhile, Tim Spector, professor of genetic epidemiology at King’s College London, said: ‘The official estimates are about 350-odd Omicron cases.
‘And because the current testing is missing a lot of those, it’s probably at least 1,000 to 2,000.’
He added that in ten days’ time the UK may have ‘more cases’ than those on the red list.