All news

Russia to halt air service with UK from December 22

Restrictions will be in effect for a week

MOSCOW, December 21. /TASS/. Russia will suspend the air traveling to and from the United Kingdom for a week from December 22 in view of a new coronavirus strain appeared there, the coronavirus infection response center told reporters on Monday.

"The response center for novel coronavirus infection import and spread prevention made a decision to temporarily halt the air service with the United Kingdom in view of worsened epidemiological situation. Restrictions will come into force from 00 hours 00 minutes of December 22, 2020 and will be in effect for a week. The response center is thoroughly examining the situation with appearance of a new coronavirus strain in the United Kingdom. Further decisions will be taken after completion of its review," the response center said.

Flights between Russia and the United Kingdom were resumed from August 1. The scheduled air service between Moscow and London is provided by Aeroflot and British Airways.

On December 14, United Kingdom’s Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Matt Hancock, said British scientists had identified a new coronavirus strain that might be to blame for high infection rates in southeastern England. Hancock said preliminary analysis indicated that the newly-discovered virus strain was spreading faster than any of those exposed previously. Prime Minister Boris Johnson told an urgent news conference on Saturday that according to the current findings the new strain might be 70% more contagious. He added that British experts had not yet found any proof that the virus mutation was fraught with a greater risk of lethal outcome.