European Union restricts visitors from United States due to coronavirus resurgence

Elias Hubbard
July 1, 2020

As the World Health Organization Director General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warned the worst of the coronavirus pandemic was "yet to come", the European Union named 14 countries from outside the bloc whose citizens are deemed "safe" to be let in from 1 July.

The EU has decided that the U.S.is being a little too freewheeling when it comes to the COVID-19 pandemic, so it established a new policy to protect the people within its borders.

The EU has tried to reopen internal borders, as a number of countries have restricted access for some visitors, such as the Czech Republic, who will not allow tourists from Portugal or Sweden.

The final list will be revealed at some point this week, but media reports have said Australia, Canada, Japan, and South Korea will be among those greenlighted.

The U.S.is not among them, placing it on par with Brazil and Russian Federation.

In order to make it on to the list and gain entrance into the European Union, countries need to meet several criteria. The bar was fixed at 16 cases per 100,000 people over the last two weeks.

Whether unrestricted travel will take place immediately is not known, as immigration control is under the jurisdiction of each member nation.

An EU diplomat told CNN that it was very "unlikely" travelers from the United States would be allowed in, adding that even though the list had not been finalized "the US's chances are close to zero".

However, it is not expected that member states will deviate from the recommendations in a direction that allows for more countries to be added to their lists. The US has the highest number of coronavirus cases in the world, with 2,590,552 positive cases, and 126,140 deaths to date according to data from the Johns Hopkins University.

Euronews has obtained, from European Union diplomatic sources, the latest draft list of the countries for which Europe's borders will be open, and can confirm what we reported on Wednesday that Brazil, the USA and Russian Federation are indeed not on the approved list.

The "safe" countries would have to lift any bans they might have on European travellers and the list will be updated every 14 days.

Earlier this week, it was reported that at least 16 U.S. states were halting plans to reopen, as reported Covid infections surged across the country. This is primarily due to fast-rising COVID-19 infection rates in that country.

"The first and foremost criteria for qualifying for this list of countries is the epidemiological situation, where of course New Zealand is nearly in a unique situation".

The other third countries where restrictions were lifted include Algeria, Georgia, Montenegro, Morocco, Rwanda, Serbia, Thailand, Tunisia and Uruguay.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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