Grant Shapps clashes with Nick Ferrari over travel rules
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Nick Ferrari was appalled by the excessive enforcement of quarantine rules where those not isolating on return from an amber list country could face a fine of up to £10,000. Home Secretary Priti Patel revealed the Government would be ramping up door-to-door police checks to see whether people are remaining inside. An angry Mr Ferrari compared them to the Stasi as he grilled Grant Shapps over the travel decision.
Speaking on LBC, Mr Ferrari asked Mr Shapps his opinion on the travel rules.
He told the transport secretary: “Do you think the British people want to be in a situation where, I’m going to call them the travel Stasi, could knock on your door and levy a fine of £10,000.
“Is that a Conservative policy?”
Mr Shapps urged the public to not travel at all and especially not to red list countries with Mr Ferrari stating: “These are the day of East Germany, aren’t they?”
The Tory frontbencher defended the Government’s position and said: “I don’t want to take issue with you Nick but there’s a bit of difference between breaking the law in a way which could affect other people’s health – coronavirus kills people…
“And what happened in East Germany under communism if you don’t mind me saying.
“Yes, there are big fines and prison sentences if you deliberately choose to ignore your responsibility to protect other people.
“But the reality is that people should only be travelling at the moment to the green list countries where you can come back and you don’t need to quarantine.”
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Mr Ferrari then asked whether funerals were exempt from the international travel rules to which Mr Shapps confirmed they were.
The Government has come under fire for confusing international travel rules where many do not fully understand what is expected from them if they travel to amber list countries.
Critics of the rules have also attacked the Government for not laying out clearer rules and reasonings for why countries are on their chosen list.
Currently, countries that are on the green list do not require mandatory quarantining on return and are only required if a test comes back positive.
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The main difference between amber and red list countries is the former requires isolation at home whereas red list will see people pay to quarantine in a government hotel.
Some travel has been completely banned due to variant of concerns meaning no one can visit or arrive from Brazil, South Africa or India.
However, despite the rise of the Indian variant the UK saw 110 flights arrive from India following their addition to the red list on April 23, according to LBC.
There are also concerns travellers from different list countries are mixing in airport terminals as queues through the border are not sufficiently segregated.
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