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Andy Burnham burns Sturgeon for ‘double standards’ over Manchester travel ban

Andy Burnham has blasted Nicola Sturgeon over her travel ban between Scotland and Manchester.

The Labour Mayor hit out after the First Minister announced non-essential travel to the English city was no longer allowed due to a rise in the number of Covid-19 cases.

Travel restrictions between Scotland and some English cities were introduced last month, due to the number of Delta variant cases detected.

She said: “We are also introducing restrictions on travel between Scotland and two English cities.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has been criticised by Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham over her travel ban.

“Manchester and Salford currently have very high levels of Covid, and so from Monday onwards, non-essential travel between Scotland and those cities is not permitted.”

An irate Burnham blasted back at the First Minister on Twitter, quoting our sister title Edinburgh Live’s Tweet about the new measures.

He wrote: “This seems unnecessary to me … … and it would have been nice if @NicolaSturgeon had contacted us beforehand to discuss it.

“Maybe the Scottish Government should try living by the same standards it frequently accuses the UK Government of lacking? #DoubleStandards.”

In another Tweet Burnham, who has over 444,000 followers, wrote: “And will they be providing any compensation for Greater Manchester residents whose trips are now being cancelled or businesses here losing bookings?”

And the English politician’s argument grew support from two Scottish MPs – Labour’s Paul Sweeney and Lib Dem Alex Cole-Hamilton.

Sweeney, a Labour & Co-op MSP for Glasgow and Shadow Minister for Public Finance & Employment, said: “Greater Manchester’s Mayor @AndyBurnhamGM is right, not only was this announcement discourteous to him and the people of Greater Manchester, the decision was made on Thursday morning – before First Minister’s Questions – yet @NicolaSturgeon did not inform the Scottish Parliament.”

And Cole-Hamilton, the Lib Dem MSP for Edinburgh Western, added: “Given that we have communities in Scotland with transmission rates equal to that of Manchester, this travel ban does not make sense while travel unrestricted across Scotland.

“This is think of a number politics and @AndyBurnhamGM is right to call it out.”

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