“Over the last 24 hours I have developed mild symptoms and tested positive for coronavirus,” Johnson said. “I am now self-isolating, but I will continue to lead the government’s response via video-conference as we fight this virus.”

It was not immediately clear when the prime minister was tested but various members of his staff had been working elsewhere when the news first emerged that he had tested positive.

Johnson, 55, reportedly began experiencing mild symptoms on Thursday and was tested for coronavirus on the personal advice of England’s Chief Medical Officer, Chris Whitty.

The latest figures show that the UK has over 11,800 confirmed cases of coronavirus infection which has, so far, resulted in the deaths of 578 people.

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