Actor Idris Elba clarifies 'annual week of quarantine' comments

Actor Idris Elba has taken to social media to clarify coronavirus comments he made recently which saw him criticised.

The Wire star appeared to suggest an annual week of quarantine in remembrance of the current coronavirus pandemic.

But the star, who himself tested for COVID-19 along with wife Sabrina Dhowre Elba back in March, has now clarified the comments.

Read more: Idris Elba calls for world to quarantine one week each year to 'remember this time'

Tweeting on Sunday (26 April), the 47-year-old said: “I didn’t suggest an actual annual lock down. I suggested a way of remembrance annually.

“Lazy journalism and and click bate thirst will get your words twisted real quick.

UNSPECIFIED LOCATION - APRIL 18: In this screengrab, Idris Elba and Sabrina Elba speak during "One World: Together At Home" presented by Global Citizen on April, 18, 2020. The global broadcast and digital special was held to support frontline healthcare workers and the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund for the World Health Organization, powered by the UN Foundation. (Photo by Getty Images/Getty Images for Global Citizen )
Idris Elba and Sabrina Elba speak during "One World: Together At Home" presented by Global Citizen on April, 18, 2020. (Photo by Getty Images/Getty Images for Global Citizen )

“The actual POINT was that agriculture and the rural poor will suffer long after this time. Focus don’t hocus.”

The 47-year-old made the suggestion during an interview last week.

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"I think that the world should take a week of quarantine every year just to remember this time," he told Associated Press. "Remember each other. I really do.

"I think it's… other species use it. It's called hibernation. But it does remind you that the world doesn't tick on your time."

One high profile critic of the comments was American talk show host Wendy Williams. She said of the comments on YouTube: “Is he serious? I don’t need to be reminded of this. This is something you’ll never forget.

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“Will you ever forget it? Will you have to quarantine next year this time? I don’t. Idris, sit down.”

Elba is a life-long sufferer of lung condition asthma which would put him amongst those vulnerable to the deadly virus.

Dhowre Elba recently shared online that the pair had been "extremely lucky" to have battled mild cases, although her husband did remark that the "scary and unsettling" experience had "turned [our] lives around".

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