Sadiq Khan says strict measures need to be implemented to avoid pandemic

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LONDON: Mayor Sadiq Khan has said that a curfew on hospitality venues and mandatory face masks in more public spaces are among proposed new measures from London leaders. He called on the Government to bringing in tighter restrictions for the capital amid rising Covid-19 cases. He said that he had met with council leaders from all parties and public health experts on Monday to “agree a new London plan” that “includes some new restrictions”.

Sadiq Khan

Speaking to Sky News after the meeting, he said the new package of measures include limitations on the times bars and restaurants can be open – such as a 10pm curfew – the use of face masks in more settings, further restrictions on weddings and funerals, and encouraging more people to work from home.

Mr Khan’s comments come as coronavirus cases rise across the UK.

He said proposed restrictions include everyone wearing face masks and not just on public transport but in public spaces and in hospitality venues for all staff “where possible”.

He told Sky News that the new package of measures learns lessons from places such as the North East, North West and Birmingham in an effort to try and reduce transmission in the community.

On the prospect of a curfew for restaurants and bars, he said: “The time does not matter. There is nothing magic about 10pm or 11pm. The issue is the amount of hours people are spending together where they could be asymptomatic and the virus passes on.

Mr Khan called on Prime Minister Boris Johnson to invite him to attend Tuesday’s Cobra meeting to help with the next steps to tackle the pandemic. He said: “This virus is spreading exponentially across all age groups” and that,“unfortunately this virus is spreading across our city”. “None of this would be a problem if there was proper testing taking place,” he added.

Mr Khan said that testing in London “is still a mess, as indeed it was back in March”.

The London Mayor also told the broadcaster that he is “really concerned” about a range of economic factors affecting London, including levels of footfall, transport, Canary Wharf and the risk of the virus spreading faster.