Home World Newspaper headlines: Boris Johnson to return amid ‘lockdown dilemma’

Newspaper headlines: Boris Johnson to return amid ‘lockdown dilemma’

Sunday Telegraph front page

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Boris Johnson returning to work on Monday is featured on many of the front pages. His photo is splashed across the front of the Sunday Telegraph, which says the government is considering plans to quarantine passengers arriving in the UK for two weeks. The paper says the scheme, which would apply to Britons as well as foreigners, could be rolled out as early as May.

Sunday Express front page

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The return of the PM will see him tighten his “grip on the crisis”, according to the Sunday Express. The papers says Mr Johnson is “raring to go” after recovering from coronavirus and will hold crucial meetings this week about easing the lockdown measures.

Observer front page

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The Observer reports a warning from leading scientists that the number of new coronavirus cases is still “much too high” to allow any easing of the lockdown soon. One of the scientists advising the government, Prof John Edmunds, says the testing and tracing system “would be overwhelmed” if the measures were lifted now.

Sunday Mirror front page

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The Sunday Mirror leads on Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer telling ministers to start treating Britons like grown-ups. In a letter to the PM, Sir Keir says the UK deserves to be told how the government intends to get the country moving again.

The Sunday Times front page

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The prime minister is coming under “concerted pressure” to ease the lockdown from a group of “Tory grandees”, claims the Sunday Times. It says a “pincer movement” of cabinet ministers, senior Tory backbenchers and Tory party donors want the restrictions eased amid signs the public is growing weary.

Mail on Sunday front page

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The Mail on Sunday reports that ministers have ordered production of up to 50 million “game-changing” immunity tests. The paper says a breakthrough by British scientists means that people could be able to reliably test whether they have developed immunity to the virus by June.

Sunday People front page

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“Use Nightingale hospitals for corona OAPs” is the headline in the Sunday People, which says the “desperate” plea from care homes comes as the UK death toll passes 20,000.

Daily Star Sunday front page

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And the Daily Star Sunday claims a Premier League star hosted a lockdown party at his home. It carries a statement from his club, Everton, which says it is “appalled” he broke the lockdown restrictions.

The Sunday Express declares that the prime minister is back to tighten his grip on the coronavirus crisis, with a crucial week of meetings about easing the lockdown.

According to the Observer, Boris Johnson is returning to a dilemma because grim data on the disease means it’s too soon to relax restrictions.

It quotes Prof John Edmunds, a member of the government’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies, who says the number of new Covid-19 cases is still too high and would overwhelm a testing and tracing system.

Another expert, Prof Paul Hunter, warns that infections need to be down to a few hundred a day – which could take months.

The Sunday Times focuses on opposing advice from Tory grandees who, it says, are putting concerted pressure on the prime minister to relax the lockdown.

The paper says there’s been a backlash since Downing Street briefed last week that Mr Johnson would not be rushing to lift restrictions after nearly losing his own life to the virus.

It quotes six Conservative donors and three cabinet ministers who voice concerns about damage to the economy and the strain on the public as the lockdown continues with no end in sight.

The Sunday Mirror leads with what it says is a “blistering letter to mealy-mouthed ministers” from Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer, who argues that the public deserve “an adult conversation” about what comes next. “Stop treating us like children”, demands the front-page headline.

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Lockdown measures were introduced in the UK on 23 March

According to the Mail on Sunday, scientists have hailed an immunity test developed at Oxford as a game-changer that could allow life to start to return to normal by June – by establishing who has had the disease already.

The paper says ministers have ordered the production of up to 50 million of the tests, which can detect antibodies in a pinprick of blood in 20 minutes.

But the Mail cautions that the strategy flies in the face of advice from the World Health Organization, which says there’s no evidence that someone with antibodies is protected from a second infection.

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The Sunday Telegraph reports that the government is working on a plan to quarantine all passengers arriving at British ports and airports for 14 days to stop the transmission of the virus from overseas.

There would be large fines for those who fail to remain at the address given to the authorities as their place of isolation.

The Telegraph says the scheme mirrors controls in force in Singapore and could be introduced here as early as next month.

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Buckingham Palace

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The Queen has been staying at Windsor Castle during the coronavirus outbreak

Finally, the Sun on Sunday has an account of the Queen’s life in lockdown at Windsor Castle with the Duke of Edinburgh and 22 staff who have said goodbye to their families for the duration.

A memo by the Master of the Royal Household, Vice Admiral Tony Johnstone-Burt, refers to the operation as HMS Bubble because it’s like a long deployment at sea.

An insider tells the paper that the Queen has become a “dab hand” at Skype and Zoom to speak to relatives and friends.

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