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UK PM Johnson orders lockdown in England as covid-19 cases surpass one million

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Boris Johnson loses support from within his own party over plans to suspend parliament

The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Boris Johnson has ordered England back into a national lockdown after the country passed the milestone of one million COVID-19 cases.

Johnson made the announcement on Saturday at a hastily convened news conference in Downing Street as a second wave of infections threatened to overwhelm the health service.

“Now is the time to take action because there is no alternative,” Johnson said, flanked by his chief medical officer, Chris Whitty, and his chief scientific adviser, Patrick Vallance.

READ ALSO: UK to begin rapid covid-19 testing at Heathrow airport

“Unless we act, we could see deaths in this country running at several thousand a day.”

The UK, which has the biggest official death toll in Europe from COVID-19, is grappling with more than 20,000 new coronavirus cases a day and scientists have warned the “worst case” scenario of 80,000 dead could be exceeded.

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