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Third Wave Will "Wash Up On UK Shores"

Writing for Politics Home, John Johnston reports that the Prime Minister has said people should be "under no illusions" that a new wave of infections in Europe will impact the UK. The UK is likely to "feel the effects" of a third wave of coronavirus infections spreading in Europe, the Prime Minister has warned.

France and Italy have been forced to reintroduce lockdown restrictions following a major surge in infections, while German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the country was "now at the beginning of a third wave".

Speaking on Monday, Johnson told Sky News: "I've talked to our European friends repeatedly over the period. We're all facing the same pandemic. We all have the same problems.

"I think one thing that's worth stressing is that on the continent right now you can see sadly there is a third wave under way. People in this country should be under no illusions that previous experience has taught us that when a wave hits our friends, I'm afraid it washes up on our shores as well. I expect that we will feel those effects in due course," he added.

Johnson said the latest surge of the virus in neighbouring countries underlined the need to continue vaccinating people "as fast as we can".

"A vaccination campaign, developing vaccines, rolling them out, these are international projects and they require international cooperation," he continued.

Johnson's comments come amid a sluggish vaccination programme on the continent which has resulted in high numbers of people continuing to be hospitalised with the virus – with EU officials saying the recent surge is likely down to the spread of the more infectious Kent variant, first detected in the UK last September.