Stormont Executive to discuss quarantine for travellers arriving from Spain

The Northern Ireland Executive is set to meet later to discuss a decision to introduce quarantine for those arriving in the Province from Spain.

By The Newsroom
Monday, 27th July 2020, 10:21 am
Passengers traveling on a flight from Malaga, in Spain,  pictured arriving at Belfast International Airport on Sunday morning. 

Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Passengers traveling on a flight from Malaga, in Spain, pictured arriving at Belfast International Airport on Sunday morning. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye

Health Minister Robin Swann announced the measure on Saturday night following similar moves across the rest of the UK.

The Ulster Unionist minister has requested a meeting of the Executive to discuss what support or advice may be required for those facing the 14-day quarantine.

The meeting is expected to take place by video conference on Monday afternoon.

Mr Swann said his decision was not taken lightly, and was made to keep people safe.

“There is no ideal time to make such a decision. A phased introduction would not have made sense. Public health considerations must take priority,” he said.

“The decision was taken after consideration of the latest data.

“Covid-19 prevalence in Spain has increased in recent weeks – a trend which accelerated rapidly in the latter half of the past week.

“I appreciate that people returning from Spain and its islands will now be faced with an unexpected period of quarantining.

“The advice from the chief medical officer and chief scientific adviser is that a negative Covid-19 test immediately on return from Spain would not exclude infection – so a period of self-isolation would still be required.”