THE First Minister has denied Wales is on an “unstoppable journey to lockdown” - but said he cannot rule anything out.

Responding to questions from the Welsh Conservative leader Andrew RT Davies about the latest restrictions introduced on Wednesday, the First Minister said: “We’re not on an unstoppable journey to lockdown.

The Leader:

“If we act together do all the things we’re able to do in our own lives, we have a chance to make a difference.

“There are lots of things we don’t know about Omicron and how it will affect us, so I can’t rule things out.

“But the measures we’ve announced are designed to mitigate the risk that more serious interventions are needed.”

The First Minister was speaking as the Senedd was recalled remotely to discuss the new measure that will be introduced in Wales, last seen when the nation was at Alert Level 2.

Earlier, Mr Drakeford did not rule out introducing further restrictions in the new year but said he hoped the measures introduced from Boxing Day would flatten the infection rate.

“I think it probably depends on how successful the measures we’ve already announced will be,” he told the Welsh Government briefing on Wednesday.

“Because if those measures succeed in flattening the curve then we will not introduce any more protections than are necessary to save people’s lives and to protect the NHS.

“That’s why we moved earlier than other parts of the UK.

“That’s why these protections will kick in straight after Christmas and if they have the intended effect, it mitigates the risk that we will need to do more.

“If we need to do more, the Welsh Government will not stand back, we never have.

“These are difficult decisions; they are not always popular decisions but if the evidence says to us that more has to be done to prevent unnecessary deaths and avoidable harm, then that is what we will do.”