Fierce arguments have broken out on Twitter after Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon laid out strict rules on household visits, in an effort to curb a rising coronavirus infection rate.

Under the new rules effective from Friday, Scots cannot visit each other’s homes unless they are from extended households. Other exceptions include couples not living together, those in need of childcare and tradespeople. A maximum of six people from two households are allowed to meet in private gardens and public outdoor spaces.

“We are once again at a tipping point. We must act to get Covid back under control,” Sturgeon said in a speech on Tuesday night. She asked citizens to “make sacrifices for our national well-being” in order to curb the spread of the disease. Sturgeon argued that “tough” measures are necessary to keep schools, public services and businesses “open as far as possible.”

The restrictions quickly caused a stir online. The hashtag #ResignSturgeon was used by people blasting the new policy. “I am heartbroken that my family can’t visit me once again. The regulations are contradictory and are punishing the majority for the actions of the minority,” one disgruntled person wrote.

“So you can go to the pub full of randoms but you can’t visit friends and family in their home,” another angry commenter said.

Sturgeon’s defenders, however, insisted that her policies “saved many lives,” and the calls for her to step down are unmerited. “Sorry, what has Sturgeon done to invoke this #ResignSturgeon to trend? Try to protect the people of Scotland?” a person wrote on Twitter, while others argued that she has done a “far superior job” in comparison to Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

“Guessing the majority of people tweeting #ResignSturgeon are the ones who didn’t listen in the first place, and are the reason we’re basically back at square one,” a person wrote online.

Hours before Scotland’s policy update was announced, PM Johnson unveiled a set of new quarantine restrictions for England. Pubs, bars and restaurants will be forced to close by 10pm starting from Thursday, among other measures. The PM also urged people to work from home if they can. Sturgeon said that the 10pm “national curfew” will apply for pubs and bars in Scotland as well.

UK officials were forced to enact tougher quarantine regulations after the Covid-19 infection rate surged in recent weeks.

A total of 383 new Covid-19 cases were reported in Scotland on Tuesday, bringing the overall tally of Scotland’s cases to 25,009.

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