UK records another 12,718 coronavirus cases, 738 deaths

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LONDON, Feb. 17 (Xinhua) — Another 12,718 people in Britain have tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the total number of coronavirus cases in the country to 4,071,185, according to official figures released Wednesday.

The country also reported another 738 coronavirus-related deaths. The total number of coronavirus-related deaths in Britain now stands at 118,933. These figures only include the deaths of people who died within 28 days of their first positive test.

The latest figures were revealed as nearly 16 million people in Britain have been given the first jab of the coronavirus vaccine. Vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi has said the government would “not rest” until the vaccine was offered to all over-50s by the end of April.

Earlier Wednesday, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he will be focusing on “data, not dates” as he is set to announce a roadmap for easing England’s coronavirus lockdown next week.

Johnson said he agreed with Professor Dame Angela McLeanthe, the government’s deputy chief scientific adviser, who told a committee of British lawmakers earlier that the relaxing of COVID-19 restrictions should depend on “data, not dates”.

Johnson is expected to unveil his “roadmap” out of lockdown on Monday next week.

The plan will be based “firmly on a cautious and prudent approach” that ensures the unlocking will be “irreversible”, said Johnson.”We want to be going one way from now on.”

Johnson urged caution and patience with the public, stressing that the easing would be done in “stages”.

England is currently under the third national lockdown since outbreak of the pandemic in the country. Similar restriction measures are also in place in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

To bring life back to normal, countries such as Britain, China, Germany, Russia and the United States have been racing against time to roll out coronavirus vaccines. Enditem

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