Dominic Raab appeared on the Sophie Ridge on Sunday show, this morning, to defend his decision to impose a quarantine on people returning from Spain, even leaving his colleague Grant Shapps facing a 14 day limbo period when he returns from his Spanish holiday.
While he was on the show Raab also discussed the growing support for an independent Scotland. Fellow guest, ex PM Tony Blair said the current PM isn’t the person to save the union.
Raab told the interviewer : “If you look at the approach we are taking, we want to be making really clear the impact that the UK has as a government, as a country, in all parts of the UK, and that includes in Scotland.
“I always want to make sure we are one United Kingdom and we get this debate, we keep coming back to it, but I think if you look at the economic benefits, cultural togetherness, our clout on the international stage, we are much better as one United Kingdom.”
He added: “I think what we need to do much more powerfully is make the positive case for it. I think if you look at elections and referendums recently there’s been a bit of ‘project fear’ that crept into all of them.
“I think we need to be more full-throated and heartfelt in making the case for the union, and I think Boris Johnson is singularly well-placed because of that optimistic fizz he has about him to make the case for the union in that way”.
Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab has doubled down on the UK’s sudden decision to reimpose strict quarantine rules at short notice on travellers returning from Spain, calling the measures “absolutely necessary”.
Raab said: “We’ve always said, as we come through the lockdown, we would need to take targeted measures.
“If we can’t do that, the risk is the virus gets back hold in the UK, the damage to the economy of a second lockdown and I think a blow to public confidence.
“So, yes, these measures are decisive and swift and, as a result of that, inconvenient for those going through them … but they are absolutely necessary.”
But Spain said it was in conversation with the UK about exempting the Canary and Balearic islands, which includes Ibiza and Mallorca, from the requirement to self-isolate for two weeks.
Foreign minister Arancha Gonzalez Laya argued Spain had coronavirus outbreaks “perfectly controlled” after the European country recorded more than 900 fresh daily Covid-19 cases for two days running.
Ministers announced on Saturday that holidaymakers who had not returned from Spain and its islands by midnight would be forced to quarantine for 14 days after Covid-19 second wave fears saw the popular holiday destination struck off the UK’s safe list.
The Foreign Office guidance advising against all but essential travel to mainland Spain does not include the islands but ministers opted to apply blanket quarantine arrangements across the Spanish territories.
Ms Gonzalez Laya told reporters: “Spain is a safe country for tourists and Spaniards.
“Like in any other European country we are seeing outbreaks – the outbreaks in Spain are perfectly controlled.”