Anger of 10,000 lorry drivers ‘held hostage’ in Covid Christmas standoff

Hauliers stranded in their cabs on UK roads say they are being used as political pawns

Juan Andrés had braced himself for what promised to be an atypical holiday season. But the lorry driver from southern Spain never imagined that Christmas Day would be spent in his cab tucking into a ham and cheese sandwich – among provisions handed out by the British military – as he inched towards the Channel.

“I would describe it as a kidnapping,” said the 52-year-old when asked about the diplomatic impasse that left him stranded on British roads for nearly a week. As many as 10,000 lorries from across Europe were stuck after France temporarily closed its border over fears of a fast-spreading coronavirus variant, reopening only to those drivers who could show a negative coronavirus test.

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