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UK orders shops to close, nixes holiday mixing in London

Virus Outbreak Britain
Posted at 11:35 AM, Dec 19, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-19 11:35:23-05

LONDON (AP — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson says Christmas gatherings can't go ahead and non-essential shops must close in London and much of southern England as he imposed a new, higher level of coronavirus restrictions to curb rapidly spreading infections.

Johnson said the capital and other areas in southern England will move to an even stricter Tier 4 alert category that requires non-essential shops, hairdressers, and indoor leisure venues to close after the end of business hours Saturday.

Johnson also said that a planned five-day easing of socializing rules that would allow up to three households to meet in "Christmas bubbles" will be canceled for Tier 4 areas.