British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has been taken into intensive care in hospital for Covid-19 treatment, his office confirmed on Monday.
Johnson has asked Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab to temporarily take over the prime minister's duties where necessary, the government said.
"Over the course of this afternoon, the condition of the prime minister has worsened and, on the advice of his medical team, he has been moved to the intensive care unit" at St Thomas' Hospital, just across the Thames from Westminster, 10 Downing Street announced.
This came a day after Johnson was sent to hospital from his home, where he had been in self-isolation for 10 days since diagnosed with Covid-19. He wrote on Twitter that he had checked in "for some routine tests as I'm still experiencing coronavirus symptoms".
British media reported Johnson has been given oxygen treatment but 10 Downing Street would not confirm that.
The prime minister remained conscious at this time, his spokesman said, adding that he had been moved to the ICU as a precaution should he require ventilation to aid his recovery.
Raab, who has taken charge of the British government, said Johnson is now in the critical care unit, adding: "The prime minister is in safe hands with the brilliant team at St Thomas' Hospital."
Concerning the cabinet, Raab said there was an "incredibly strong team spirit" behind Johnson, in a bid to reassure the public that "the government's business will continue".
"The focus of the government will continue to be on making sure the prime minister's direction - all the plans to making sure we can defeat coronavirus and pull the country through this challenge - will be taken forward," Raab said.
Buckingham Palace said that Queen Elizabeth, who remains at Windsor Castle, had been 'kept informed' on the prime minister's condition and his transfer to intensive care.
On Sunday, in only the fifth televised address of her 68-year reign, Elizabeth called upon Britons to demonstrate they were as strong as generations of the past by staying resolute during the national lockdown in the face of the coronavirus outbreak.
Liu Xiaoming, the Chinese ambassador to Britain, joined a long line of diplomats and world leaders in wishing Johnson a speedy recovery.
On his personal Twitter account, Liu said: "Our thoughts are with Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Let's hope and pray that he will get well soon."
French President Emmanuel Macron said he wished him to "overcome this ordeal quickly".
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, whose wife recently recovered from Covid-19, sent his best wishes to Johnson for a full and speedy recovery. "My thoughts are with you and your family right now. Hope to see you back at Number 10 soon," he said.
Johnson's fiancee, Carrie Symonds, is expecting the couple's baby in early summer. She said on Saturday she had spent a week in bed with the main coronavirus symptoms, but added that she had not been tested.
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