Idris Elba has clarified his recent comments suggesting the world should go into quarantine for a week every year to ‘remember’ the coronavirus pandemic.

The Luther actor, who himself tested positive for Covid-19 in March, was accused of being ‘tone-deaf’ when he appeared to suggest a ‘week of quarantine’ annually to ‘remember this time’ when many countries and cities are still under strict lockdown rules. 

However, Idris has now explained what he actually meant and tweeted on Sunday: ‘I didn’t suggest an actual annual lock down. I suggested a way of remembrance annually.’ 

He added: ‘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 with the Associated Press and said: ‘You know, everyone’s sort of feeling the way we have been feeling, but it has definitely been sort of just a complete upheaval. 

‘I think that the world should take a week of quarantine every year just to remember this time. 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.’ 

The Wire star was slammed by talk show host Wendy Williams, who said in a YouTube video: ‘Is he serious? I don’t need to be reminded of this. This is something you’ll never forget. 

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

Idris and his wife Sabrina Elba were diagnosed with Covid-19 in March after being exposed to the virus by someone who also tested positive. 

They self-isolated in New Mexico after being trapped there when the US and UK went into lockdown, meaning they were unable to get flights back home. 

The couple were last week named UN Goodwill Ambassadors to help lessen the impact of Covid-19 on farmers and food producers in rural areas. 

Sharing an insight into their new roles, Sabrina explained: ‘People forget that 80% of the poor population live in these rural areas. 

‘What we are really worried about at the moment, and why we are launching this fund is that those people are being forgotten.’ 

So far, Covid-19 has claimed the lives of more than 203,000 people worldwide, including over 20,000 deaths in the UK.

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