British Health Secretary Sajid Javid told parliament Monday that the omicron coronavirus variant is now spreading in the UK through community transmission rather than solely via people who have travelled to Britain from abroad.
He said there was now a total of 336 cases of omicron in the country -- 261 in England, 71 in Scotland and four in Wales.
"This includes cases with no links to international travel, so we can conclude there is now community transmission across multiple regions of England,” Javid said.
He warned that he could not guarantee that omicron would not “knock us off our road to recovery.”
Javid said that from 4 a.m. Tuesday, both vaccinated and unvaccinated travelers from non-red list countries to Britain would have to show a negative COVID-19 test from the previous 48 hours before departing.
He also noted that Nigeria has been added to the red list.
The UK recorded 51,459 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday, bringing the total number of cases since the start of the pandemic to over 10.5 million.
There were also 41 deaths recorded across the UK over the past 24 hours, bringing the total since the start of the pandemic to 145,646.
Up to and including Dec. 5, 2021, 88.9% of Brits aged 12 and over had received their first dose, 81% their second, and 35.8% their booster or third dose.