Monday is Independence Day in England. The day has received the moniker as all social restrictions, such as wearing of masks and maintaining social distancing, which have been imposed to fight against COVID-19, have been lifted.
The reversal of restrictions comes amid a spike in COVID cases and hospitalizations in England, largely driven by the delta version of the virus.
Independence Day is also taking place as Sajid Javid, Britain’s health minister, is self-isolating after he tested positive for COVID. The National Health Service informed British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Finance Minister Rishi Sunak that they had come in contact with someone who had tested positive for COVID.
Those who have been informed of exposure by the NHS are expected to self-isolate. Johnson and Sunak, however, had hoped to participate in a pilot program that would have allowed them to work in Downing Street, but decided against it after a public uproar.
“While test and trace piloting is fairly restrictive, only essential government business is permitted,” Sunak posted on Twitter, “I agree that even the sentiment is misplaced that the rules are not the same for everyone.” . For this I will normally self-isolate and will not participate in the pilot. ”
In Thailand, protesters protesting against the government’s handling of the COVID outbreak clashed with police in the capital Bangkok on Sunday. The protests in the capital and other places across the country were in defiance of the government’s recently announced ban on public gatherings of more than five people.
American teen tennis sensation Coco Gauff has tested positive for COVID and will not be a part of the Tokyo Olympics. The 17-year-old posted on Twitter that “It has always been a dream for me to represent the USA at the Olympics, and I hope there will be many more opportunities for me to make it come true in the future.” It was not immediately clear whether Gauff had been vaccinated. The Olympic Games were canceled last year, but the Olympic Committee’s decision to continue with the Games this year has drawn a lot of criticism as the world still grapples with the COVID pandemic.
According to the Johns Hopkins University’s Coronavirus Resource Center, 190.4 million global COVID cases and more than 4 million deaths from the virus were recorded worldwide early Monday. The Centre’s data shows that more than 3.6 billion vaccines have been administered so far.