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Johnson warns of ‘tougher measures’ as UK records youngest COVID-19 death

The death toll in the United Kingdom (UK) has reached more than 280, with one of the latest victims aged just 18.

FILE: Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson addresses a press conference during an European Union Summit at European Union Headquarters in Brussels on 17 October 2019. Picture: AFP

JOHANNESBURG – As many governments around the world deploy varying interventions in reaction to the novel coronavirus, the British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has now warned "tougher measures" could be brought forward if people fail to act on government advice.

The death toll in the United Kingdom (UK) has reached more than 280, with one of the latest victims aged just 18.

It's thought to be the youngest victim in the UK so far.

Restaurants, cafes, pubs, gyms and cinemas are all closed in the UK, but the government message about avoiding social gatherings and keeping two metres apart isn’t being followed by some.

In Germany, that message is now law, with gatherings of more than two people outside of work and home banned.

This week, the UK government will send out 1.5 million letters to those most at risk of coronavirus, urging them to stay at home.

The initial period is for 12 weeks but with Italy’s death toll still rising steeply despite a total lock down, that may seem optimistic

At the same time, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said postponing the 2020 summer Olympics was a possibility.

It's the first time Abe has changed his staunch public position that the Olympics will start on the 24 July as scheduled.

In recent days, a growing number of countries and athletes have called for the games to be postponed, while Canada announced on Monday morning that it won't be sending any teams.

The International Olympic Committee said a final decision on postponement would be made within four weeks due to the vast complexities of rescheduling a massive global sporting event like the Olympics.

To track the latest developments around the coronavirus both in South Africa and abroad, click on this live status report from Strategix.