The U.K. government on Wednesday outlined plans to impose stricter coronavirus restrictions on millions of people across England as Covid-19 cases continue to rise.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said more regions would be placed into the toughest Tier 4 category from 00:01 London time on Thursday.

“This new variant is now spreading across most of England and cases are doubling fast,” Hancock told the House of Commons. “It is therefore necessary to apply Tier 4 measures to a wider area, including the remaining parts of the southeast, as well as large parts of the midlands, the northwest, the northeast and the southwest.”

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