Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:31 pm on 9th March 2020.

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Photo of Matthew Hancock Matthew Hancock Secretary of State for Health and Social Care 3:31 pm, 9th March 2020

The reason is that there are many UK citizens in that area who may want to come home. Also, crucially—this is very important—the evidence shows that banning flights from affected areas does very little to protect us. Indeed, Italy was the only country in Europe that banned flights from China earlier in the progress of this disease: it did not work, and now Italy is the epicentre of the European outbreak.