NICOLA Sturgeon has insisted she won’t rule out from forcing English people to quarantine for 2 weeks when they visit.
The First Minister said again today that she had to consider the drastic move to protect Scots.
But she stressed that she was not “immediately planning” it.
The current rules see anyone coming into Scotland from overseas being put into quarantine for 14 days or face a £480 fine, but these don’t affect anyone from England, Wales or Northern Ireland.
Speaking on the Andrew Marr Show this morning, she said the Scottish Government has to take a “very close look” to make sure the virus is not coming in to Scotland from other parts of the UK.
Ms Sturgeon said: “One of our biggest risks over the next few weeks, as we have driven levels of the virus to very low levels in Scotland, is the risk of importation into the country.
“That’s why we’ve taken a very cautious decision about international quarantine.
“And – this is not a position I relish being in – it also means that we have to take a very close look at making sure that we are not seeing the virus come in from other parts of the UK.”
However, she insisted that “of course people in England are welcome in Scotland”.
Scotland has been recording a lower rate of Covid infections than England, and fewer deaths.
But today Michael Gove hit back, saing he didn’t think it would be a good idea at all.
“I don’t think the idea of erecting a hard border between Scotland and England is in any way a good thing,” he said.
“I think it would be difficult to have a situation where people who live and work on either side of the Scotland/England border will suddenly find their freedom of movement curtailed.
“You take a case in point, the head of the Scots Law Society lives in Northumberland. It is the case that there are farmers in Dumfriesshire, who will make sure that their livestock are taken to market in Carlisle.”
Last week Boris Johnson tore into her “absolutely astonishing” idea.
He said: “There is no such thing as a border between England and Scotland.
“There have been no such discussions with the Scottish administration about that but I would point out what he knows very well – there is no such thing as a border between England and Scotland.”
She furiously hit back, saying his comment were “absurd”.
“We should all be focusing with an absolute laser-like focus on what we need to do within our own responsibilities and working together when necessary to stop a virus,” she argued.