The government has the power to impose tougher Covid restrictions on Manchester and other towns amid a growing row over tough new measures, foreign secretary Dominic Raab has said.
Mr Raab told Sky News that Westminster will “keep talking” with local leaders over further coronavirus restrictions but said the “government has the powers to proceed in any event” should these talks fail.
He said Labour were sending mixed messages, accusing the opposition of “political confusion”.
“There’s a curious situation where we’ve got Andy Burnham in Manchester resisting targeted localised measures and Keir Starmer the leader of the Labour Party calling for a nationwide, albeit temporary, lockdown. That seems to me political confusion. The Labour Party and Andy need to explain,” the foreign secretary told ITV News.
He continued: “Our door is always open. We’ve worked very effectively with Steve Rotheram in Merseyside, with Sadiq Khan in London. We want to continue that best practise with all of our leaders across the country.”