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UK Covid death toll rises by 504 as 16,298 more cases are confirmed

A further 504 people had died from Covid-19 in the UK bringing the total to 60,617 as a further 16,298 cases were confirmed. Separate figures published by the UK’s statistics agencies for deaths where Covid-19 has been mentioned on the death certificate, together with additional data on deaths that have occurred in recent days, show there have now been 76,000 ...

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Time running out as Brexit trade talks restart

The UK and the EU have resumed talks on post-Brexit trade in London, with time running out to achieve a deal. A senior UK government source said the prospects of a breakthrough were “receding” and accused the EU of making “11th-hour” demands. But a Brussels source denied this, with EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier calling Friday an “important day”. Both ...

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UK hopes for millions of Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine doses this year

Britain hopes that millions of doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine will be delivered by the end of the year but the total will depend on how quickly it can be manufactured, Britain’s business minister Alok Sharma said on Friday. Britain approved Pfizer Inc’s COVID-19 vaccine on Wednesday, jumping ahead of the rest of the world in the race to ...

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Covid Pfizer vaccine approved for use next week in UK

The UK has become the first country in the world to approve the Pfizer/BioNTech coronavirus vaccine for widespread use. British regulator, the MHRA, says the jab, which offers up to 95% protection against Covid-19 illness, is safe for roll out. Immunisations could start within days for people in high priority groups. The UK has already ordered 40m doses – enough ...

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UK says Brexit trade talks with EU are in their ‘last week’

Britain’s foreign minister said Sunday there is only about a week left for the U.K. and the European Union to strike a post-Brexit trade deal, with fishing rights the major obstacle to an agreement. As talks continued between the two sides in London, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said “I think we are into the last week or so of substantive ...

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Coronavirus: PM writes to MPs amid anger over new tiers

Boris Johnson has written to Conservative MPs to reassure them about aspects of England’s new Covid tier system, as he faces the prospect of a rebellion in the Commons this week. England’s lockdown ends on 2 December, and many Tory MPs are unhappy with the toughened tiers that will replace it. MPs will vote on the system on Tuesday, with ...

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UK to launch new watchdog next year to police tech giants

Britain plans to create a new watchdog to police big tech companies including Google and Facebook to counter their market dominance and prevent them from exploiting consumers and small businesses. The U.K. government said Friday that it’s setting up a “Digital Markets Unit” next year to enforce a new code of conduct governing the behavior of tech giants that dominate ...

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Covid-19: Three households can mix over Christmas in UK

Up to three households will be able to meet up during a five-day Christmas period of 23 to 27 December, leaders of the four UK nations have agreed. People can mix in homes, places of worship and outdoor spaces, and travel restrictions will also be eased. But a formed “Christmas bubble” must be “exclusive” and would not be able to ...

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England cuts traveler quarantine period to five days

England is drastically reducing its quarantine period for people arriving from most destinations in a move that will potentially throw open the doors for British people wanting to take foreign vacations. As of December 15, travelers arriving into England will have to self-isolate just five days instead of the current 14 under a new testing strategy announced by the UK ...

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Shamima Begum shouldn’t be allowed back: UK Supreme Court

A British-born woman who went to Syria as a schoolgirl to join Islamic State should not be allowed to return to Britain to challenge the government taking away her citizenship because she poses a security risk, the UK’s top court heard on Monday. Shamima Begum, who was born to Bangladeshi parents, left London in 2015 when she was 15 and ...

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