UK records lowest daily coronavirus death toll since September

Britain has recorded another four coronavirus-related deaths, the lowest daily increase since early September last year.

Xinhua April 20, 2021

People walk in Covent Garden in London, Britain, April 12, 2021. [Photo/Xinhua]

Britain has recorded another four coronavirus-related deaths, the lowest daily increase since early September last year, the official data showed Monday.

It brings the total number of people who have died within 28 days of a positive COVID-19 test to 127,274.

Another 2,963 people in Britain have tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the total number of coronavirus cases in the country to 4,390,783, according to official figures.

Meanwhile, nearly 33 million people in Britain have been given the first jab of the coronavirus vaccine, while the number of people who are fully vaccinated has exceeded 10 million.

However, experts have warned that despite progress in vaccine rollout, Britain is "still not out of the woods" amid concerns over new variants, particularly those first emerged in South Africa, Brazil and India, and the third wave of pandemic on the European continent.

Earlier Monday, British Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced that travel from India to Britain is being banned for non-British and Irish citizens from 4:00 a.m. BST (0300 GMT) on Friday after the country was added to Britain's travel "red list".

Hancock told lawmakers in the British parliament that the decision came after the detection of 103 cases in Britain of a new COVID-19 variant which first emerged in India.

It is understood that the coronavirus variant B.1.617, which has a "double mutation", may be more infectious and the current vaccines may be less effective against it.

Earlier Monday, Downing Street confirmed that British Prime Minister Boris Johnson's trip to India next week has been canceled.

"In the light of the current coronavirus situation, Prime Minister Boris Johnson will not be able to travel to India next week," the British and Indian governments said in a joint statement.

India is currently reeling under the second COVID-19 wave, with more than 200,000 new cases being registered each day recently and the national tally feared to cross the 15-million mark early next week.

In England, all shops reopened from April 12 as lockdown eases, along with hairdressers, beauty salons and other close-contact services.

Restaurants and pubs were allowed to serve food and alcohol to customers sitting outdoors. Meanwhile, gyms, spas, zoos, theme parks, libraries and community centers can all open.

On May 17, restaurants and pubs are expected be allowed to resume indoor service and see most rules on gathering outdoors lifted.

To bring life back to normal, countries such as Britain, China, Russia, the United States as well as the European Union have been racing against time to roll out coronavirus vaccines.

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