Covid live news: Six cases of Omicron variant found in Scotland; WHO says ‘very high’ global risk from new strain

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Labour: people should wear masks in hospitality settings in England

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Swinney: ‘degree of community transmission’ suggested in Scotland cases

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Dutch police arrest couple trying to flee quarantine for Spain

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JCVI deputy chair: ‘inevitably everybody will be offered a booster’ in the UK

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WHO: Omicron variant poses ‘very high’ global risk, mutations are ‘concerning’

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John Swinney: ‘no evidence of serious illness’ in Omicron cases in Scotland

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First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to hold emergency briefing over Omicron variant cases in Scotland

Nicola Sturgeon is to hold an emergency briefing at 10.30am Monday morning after it emerged that six cases of the new Covid variant Omnicron have been detected in Scotland, in Lanarkshire and the Greater Glasgow and Clyde area.

The first minister is already due to warn people to redouble their efforts to follow physical distancing and mask-wearing guidelines in Scotland, and to make sure they are fully vaccinated, in her key- note speech to a Scottish National party conference later.

In a text released in advance, Sturgeon is expected to say:

There are big and very real challenges ahead over the winter months. Cases are rising in countries all around us. We know that colder weather, forcing us indoors, coupled with festive socialising will create increased opportunities for the virus to spread.

And, most seriously of all, the Omicron variant is causing profound concern here and across the world So we must not drop our guard. This is a time to be more vigilant, not less.

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Scotland’s health secretary: ‘we must redouble our efforts to follow basic rules’

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Six cases of Omicron variant have been identified in Scotland

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UK minister: tightening rules further is ‘not something I’m anticipating’