THE Welsh first minister has hit out at the UK Government for "ignoring the science" on Covid restrictions after describing England as a "global outlier".

On Friday, Mark Drakeford launched an attack on Boris Johnson, accusing the Prime Minister of leading a government that is "politically paralysed”.

Speaking on Sunday, the first minister of Wales defended his comments about the UK Government's decision not to bring in stricter measures to stop the spread of Covid-19 in England.

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Drakeford told Sky's Trevor Phillips: “I’m asked time after time why isn’t Wales doing the same things as England?

“My answer was to point out that in this debate it is not Wales that is the outlier.

“Wales is following the same path of putting protections in place that is being followed by Scotland, Northern Ireland, and not just devolved governments in the UK, but governments across Europe and across the world.

“The questions as to why the UK Government has decided not to follow that course of action are for them to answer, not for me.

“I think they have not done what the science would have told them they should do.

“But that’s decisions for them to answer for – I’m answerable for the decisions we take here in Wales.”

The current Covid restrictions in Wales are similar to those in place across Scotland but differ in some aspects.

The National:

In Wales, like in Scotland, face coverings must be worn in indoor public spaces and there is advice to work from home where possible.

However, groups in public places such as restaurants are limited to six people, whereas in Scotland the advice is to limit groups to no more than three households.

The Welsh rules are stricter on the number of people allowed at public events with no more than 30 people allowed at indoor events and no more than 50 people allowed at outdoor events.

In Scotland, the number of people allowed to attend public events is 100 for an indoor standing event, 200 for indoor seated and 500 for outdoor events.

The rules in Scotland are set to be reviewed on January 17.

Drakeford said that having different restrictions in both England and Wales made public health communications “more difficult”.

“When we have different messages across our border that does make it more difficult for us,” he told Sky News.

“We have faced this in the past and we go on doing as we see it as the right thing to protect lives and livelihoods here in Wales.”

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He also said he was hopeful the restrictions could be lifted in Wales as he was expecting a steep decline in infections once the peak in the next couple of weeks was reached.

“As soon as we are in a position to see the peak past and the position improving, of course we will want to revert to the far more modest level of protections we had in place only a few weeks ago,” he said.

“We’re hopeful that the level of protections we currently have in place will be sufficient to mitigate the impact of Omicron to help our NHS to deal with the astonishing pressures which it’s having to deal with every day.”