London COULD be blocked: No. 10 refuses to lock out capital to control the outbreak of the corona virus amid the anger of Sadiq Khan's anger over Boris’s "unacceptable" one-sided M25 quarantine plan
- Sadiq Khan has condemned the idea of blocking the M25 around London in the event of coronavirus cases recurring
- The Mayor of London complained that Boris Johnson had not consulted him about the dramatic prospect
- An M25 ban was one of the options discussed at the Prime Minister's "War Gaming" session last week
- Downing Street refuses to rule out the move, but says the quarantine concept doesn't just apply to London
No10 today refused to rule out effective foreclosure in London as coronavirus cases increase when Sadiq Khan accused Boris Johnson of neglecting the city's interests.
The Mayor of London wrote to the Prime Minister to express "great surprise" at proposals to set up a quarantine zone within the M25 and complained that it was 12 weeks since he was invited to a Cobra meeting and the lack of consultation is "unacceptable".
Mr. Johnson held a "war game" session with Chancellor Rishi Sunak last week to look at possible options as fears about a second climax of the disease are increasing.
Measures considered included lockdown-like conditions for London, with the M25 acting as a barrier around the capital, according to the Times.
Downing Street said the government's "contain" strategy stipulated that traffic restrictions could be imposed "if there is an area that is particularly hard hit." However, the Prime Minister's spokesman said this was not just an opportunity for London, as any location could be subject to a similar block.
In other developments today:
- Health Minister Matt Hancock has rejected "inaccurate" claims that anyone over 50 could be instructed to protect themselves if the situation worsens.
- The government launched its "Eat to Help" program with a 50 percent discount to encourage people to support restaurants.
- A top scientist has sentenced the "shroud of secrecy" to government decisions on the corona virus.
- Officials rebel against Mr. Johnson's request that they be returned to their offices over concerns about the risk of infection.
- The ministers introduced new 90-minute saliva tests and called them "game changers".
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan (pictured last month), wrote to the Prime Minister to express "great surprise" at proposals that the capital could be effectively sealed off if there is an increase in coronavirus infections
Mr. Khan said it was "totally unacceptable" that contingency plans were discussed without his knowledge
In a letter to Mr. Johnson from Mr. Khan and London Councils Chairman Peter John, “It is very surprising that we read in the Sunday newspapers that the government did a critical exercise last week in the Covid 19 revived infections in London were a key scenario.
According to media reports, it was planned to use the M25 as a quarantine ring to effectively seal the city.
& # 39; Our surprise is that such far-reaching contingency plans were discussed and tested without the involvement or awareness of the London government.
"This is clearly completely unacceptable and an affront to London and the Londoners."
The letter also said the government was slow to make decisions or "made wrong decisions again and again during this crisis," adding, "It has to stop."
"If we ignore democratically elected representatives who understand their communities better than the central government, it will result in poorer results for Londoners and the country as a whole."
In a tweet, Mr. Khan said, "Excluding local leaders in this way does not help us control the virus and must stop now."
Downing Street said the ability to impose travel restrictions was set out in its strategy to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, but denied that it was a plan specifically designed for the capital.
The contain strategy provides for the ability to introduce travel restrictions when an area is particularly hard hit.
"One of the steps may be the closure of local transportation networks," said the Prime Minister's official spokesman.
"It is there, it is included in the document, it is nothing new – we have informed the public and politicians that this is a possible measure that we could take.
"But to be clear, it's not specific to London or anywhere else."
In the meantime, a top scientist has slammed the "shroud of secrecy" around the government's coronavirus decisions.
Sir Paul Nurse, head of the Francis Crick Institute, expressed concern that a “black box” in Whitehall seemed to make crucial decisions, the results of which were sometimes “shambolic”.
He insisted that more transparency and control were needed to get the "best results".
The intervention came when the government faced a new backlash on mixed messaging. Grants for dining in restaurants are being introduced today and the advice that everyone should work from home is being downgraded.
However, there are also growing rumors about tightening corona virus rules in some areas, with concerns about an impending second wave.
Officials have complained that they are being used as guinea pigs to return to office, with other cases having been the focus of government in the past fortnight.
Boris Johnson (pictured last week) held a "war game" session with Chancellor Rishi Sunak to examine possible options in the event of a second coronavirus climax
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