Boris Johnson is holding a press conference today about the Omicron variant

The Prime Minister will update the nation on the spread of the Omicron variant (Image: Rex)

Boris Johnson is holding a press conference in Downing Street this afternoon following the return of Covid measures to tackle the Omicron variant.

The Prime Minister will speak after face masks have become mandatory in public transport and in shops in England.

Researchers have so far found 14 cases of the supermutated strain in the UK, but more are expected to follow.

The new measures include UK arrivals taking PCR tests, while adults aged 18 and over will be offered booster jabs much faster.

Health Minister Gillian Keegan faced questions this morning amid fears that last year’s ‘canceled’ Christmas is repeating itself.

She said the government ‘hopes we can keep Christmas on track’, adding that the situation is very different after the rollout of the vaccine.

Ms Keegan also said the chances of having to isolate herself over Christmas were “pretty low”.

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Meanwhile, health authorities are trying to determine the origin of the clusters and find people who have come in contact with the infected.

There is growing concern about the new strain, which experts fear could be more contagious than Delta and could potentially be resistant to vaccines.

Researchers are desperately collecting data before confirming whether these suspicions are true, as governments around the world enforce preventive restrictions.

The latest recorded Omicron cases are part of a cluster of infections in Lanarkshire and Greater Glasgow.

That brings Scotland’s total Omicron cases to nine,’s Health Minister Humza Yousaf told the BBC.

He said there was still nothing to link the infections to the recent Cop26 conference in Glasgow or the recent rugby match between Scotland and South Africa.

Cases were only discovered over the weekend, and five have so far been confirmed in England – in London, Nottingham and Chelmsford.

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