Australia deports commentator Hopkins to brag about quarantine


Canberra, Australia (AP) — Far-right British commentator Katie Hopkins will be deported from Australia after boasting of violating national quarantine rules on social media, officials said Monday.

Hopkins traveled to Australia to appear on a reality television show and participated in a 14-day mandatory hotel quarantine in Sydney before filming began.

Her flight to Australia caused anger last week after the government halved the number of Australian citizens and permanent residents to 3,000 each week to reduce the risk of COVID-19 leaking from hotel quarantine. More than 34,000 Australians wishing to return are stuck abroad.

Australia’s two largest cities, Sydney and Melbourne, have been blocked to contain the outbreak of the coronavirus caused by the more contagious delta mutation.

Interior Minister Karen Andrews said Hopkins would be deported after boasting on Instagram her intention to ignore quarantine rules.

“It’s scary that this individual behaves like she did and she leaves,” Andrews told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

“We will take her out of the country as soon as we can arrange it,” Andrews added.

Hopkins, who is notorious for his anti-Islamic comments, described the blockade of the pandemic as “the greatest hoax in human history.”

In an Instagram video removed from the hotel room, she said she was going to scare the staff who brought the meal naked without a mask.

People under quarantine cannot open the hotel room door until 30 seconds after the meal is delivered and must wear a mask while the door is open.

Andrews said Hopkins’ comment was shameful.

“The fact that she was proud of her quarantine breach was just horrifying,” Andrews said. “This is a slap and unacceptable behavior for all Australians currently blocked.”

Ende Morshine Australia, the production company for the program “Big Brother VIP,” where Seven Network and Hopkins were scheduled to appear, said her contract was canceled on Sunday.

“Seven and Endemol Shine strongly condemn her irresponsible and reckless comments on hotel quarantine,” the two companies said in a joint statement.

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