France should consider closing borders with UK, says government advisor

France should consider closing its borders with Britain and other countries that have a strong presence of the new variant of the coronavirus first found in the UK, epidemiologist and government adviser Arnaud Fontanet has said.

“It is important that we consider whether we need to close the borders to a limited number of countries, notably the United Kingdom and Ireland,” he said on BFM television.

“This is certainly a point for the agenda. It is not up to the scientific council to decide this, but we want to raise the issue.”

French authorities said on Sunday that the more infectious variant had now been detected in France’s Mediterranean port of Marseille and in the Alps.

“The new COVID variant is nearly a new epidemic within the epidemic,” Fontanet said.

He said the new variant was more contagious, but that for now there were no signs that its mortality rate was higher.

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