BBC factchecker debunks Boris Johnson's claim about England's Covid-19 rates

The BBC's Joel Massey on Politics Live

The BBC's Joel Massey on Politics Live - Credit: Twitter

A BBC factchecker has debunked Boris Johnson's claims that coronavirus infection rates were falling across England.

Politics Live's Joel Massey said government data showed the majority of local authority areas reported an increase in cases over the past week.

Johnson had declared that a "huge amount of progress" had been made to bringing down infection rates.

His comments comes as London entered Tier 3 restrictions Wednesday morning, prompting concerns the government may have to pull plans to relax coronavirus restrictions over Christmas.

Quoting government data for England released last week and analysed by the BBC, Massey said: "Of the 315 local authority areas in England, there are 69 areas where rates went down and there are 246 areas where rates went up.

Massey continued: "For Tier 2, there are 26 where rates went down or stayed flat and 121 areas where rates went up.

"In terms of Tier 3 areas, there are 34 areas where rates went down and 123 where they went up.

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"Whether you look at the whole country, Tier 2 or Tier 3, the rates on the whole are going up."

Taking to Twitter, @dornerk responded: "A reality check if ever there was one," Victoria Driscoll added: "Oh my days."

This comes as the prime minister declared there would be "no change" to Covid Christmas restrictions despite a trend showing a spike in cases.

MORE: PMQs Review: The Christmas Special with all your favourite catchphrases

Instead, Johnson urged people to “exercise extreme caution” as they celebrate Christmas. He told MPs: “We should exercise extreme caution in the way we celebrate Christmas.

"We can celebrate it sensibly but we have to be extremely cautious in the way we behave."

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