Saturday, 27 November 2021 11:49 GMT

US to end restrictions for vaccinated air travelers


(MENAFN- Newsroom Panama)   AFP,Washington - The United States announced on Monday that it will lift in November, for people vaccinated the entry restrictions into the country imposed 18 months ago by the Covid-19 pandemic, which particularly harmed travelers from Europe.

Jeffrey Zients, the coronavirus response coordinator for the government of President Joe Biden, told reporters that the measure will take effect "early November."

The easing of travel restrictions imposed in March 2020 by Donald Trump, when the coronavirus pandemic broke out, marks a significant change by the Biden government and responds to significant demand from European allies at a time of tense diplomatic relations. .

In addition, the closure of borders affected millions of travelers, including those vaccinated, causing painful personal and family situations, as well as growing impatience, particularly among Europeans.

Currently, only US citizens, residents, and foreigners with special visas can enter the United States from most European countries.

Numerous safeguards

However, numerous safeguards will be maintained to prevent the spread of the virus, which has already killed more than 670,000 Americans, and which is increasing due to the Delta variant, after a sharp drop in the first months of the year.

It is not immediately clear if the new measure applies only to vaccines approved by the United States, or if it also includes those made by China or Russia. Zients said that will be determined by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

He added that restrictions on the movement of vehicles from Canada and Mexico will be maintained.

Zients said travelers will need to prove they are fully vaccinated before boarding planes bound for the United States, and also provide a negative Covid-19 test taken up to 72 hours in advance.

Americans who are not immunized may enter only if they exhibit a negative test performed within the previous 24 hours.

Masks will be mandatory on flights to the United States and airlines will provide the country's health authorities with contact tracing information.

"This new system follows the recommendations of science to keep Americans' international air travel safe," Zients said.

The announcement was quickly welcomed by the Airlines For Europe group, which considered that "this decision will give a much-needed boost to transatlantic traffic and tourism and will bring together families and friends."

While Biden was expected to reopen borders for the European Union (EU) and the United Kingdom, the announcement covers the entire world.

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