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Several countries have announced travel restrictions

(CNN) – Several EU countries are mobilizing to prevent arrivals from travelers from South Africa and other African countries due to fears of a new outbreak alternative COVID-19 present in the area.

The union’s president, Ursula von der Leyen, said on Twitter on Friday that the union was studying the possibility of activating “emergency brakes to stop air travel from the South African region”.

They started taking measures on the new variant of covid-19 in South Africa 2:37

Germany says it will declare South Africa a “changing zone for the virus” and, as of Friday night, airlines will only be able to fly out of the country to bring back German nationals.

“We have been, are and will continue to be vigilant about entering the country. This newly discovered variable worries us, so we are acting proactively and early. The last thing we need now is the emergence of a new variable, which will lead to the emergence of a new variable,” Acting German Health Minister Jens Spahn said in a statement.

Italy and Austria have banned anyone who has visited South Africa, Lesotho, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Namibia and Eswatini in the last 14 days.

Austrian citizens can still return to the country, but they will be subject to “strict” quarantine rules according to Austrian Health Minister Wolfgang Mokstein.

France and Holland

France has decided to suspend all flights from 7 countries in South Africa for at least 48 hours, according to a statement issued by the French Prime Minister’s Office, today, Friday.

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The ban will apply to travelers from South Africa, Lesotho, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Namibia and Eswatini, regardless of their vaccination status according to the press release.

“If no case has yet been detected on French soil, the principle of maximum precaution must be applied.”

Meanwhile, a Dutch flight ban from South African countries will take effect from 12 noon on Friday, according to the announcement by Hugo de Jong, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Health, Welfare and Sports.

Speaking to reporters in The Hague on Friday morning, de Jong did not mention which countries in South Africa would be subject to the ban.

He added that at the time he was speaking, two flights were currently flying into the country.

De Jong said those on the flights would have to self-quarantine upon arrival in the Netherlands.

Chris Fern, Malta’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Health, said in a tweet on Friday that in Malta, travel to and from areas with identified cases will be temporarily banned from midnight Saturday.

Israel records the first case of variant B.1,1.529

Israel recorded its first case of the new coronavirus B.1,1.529 and the country announced that seven countries in South Africa will be included in the red list. This means that returnees from those countries must be quarantined at a designated hotel.

The subspecies of the delta variant is found in Israel 0:46

A statement issued by the Israeli Ministry of Health, dated Friday morning, said that a person returning to Israel from Malawi was found to be carrying the new type. Awaiting the final results of the tests of two other people who are also suspected of being infected.

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The ministry says the three people have been vaccinated, although exact details of the vaccines are still being verified.

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said Thursday night that he accepted the health ministry’s recommendations to put South Africa, Lesotho, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Namibia and Eswatini on a new red list.

Travelers from these countries will not be allowed to enter Israel, and even Israelis who have received three doses of the COVID-19 vaccine will need to isolate themselves in a particular hotel upon return from these countries until they give two negative results in one PCR test.

Asian countries are also taking measures

Japan has tightened border controls for travelers from South Africa and five other African countries after the discovery of the novel coronavirus variant B.1,1.529.

Travelers from South Africa, Botswana, Eswatini, Zimbabwe, Namibia and Lesotho will be required to quarantine in government-provided facilities for 10 days starting at midnight local time on Saturday 27 November.

Meanwhile, Singapore has banned entry to non-residents from seven African countries due to concerns about the new variant of coronavirus B.1,1,529, according to Singapore’s Ministry of Health.

All long-term pass holders and short-term visitors with a history of travel to Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa or Zimbabwe in the past 14 days will not be able to enter Singapore or transit Singapore from the 27th. November at 11:59 p.m., according to a statement issued Friday.

The restrictions will remain in place for four weeks, after which they will be reviewed for a possible extension.

Singaporeans and permanent residents returning from these countries will be required to provide 10 days’ notice to stay at home at a designated facility.

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Contributed by Andrew Carey, Prince Tal, Junko Ogura, Alex Stampo, Allegra Goodwin, Niamh Kennedy, Mick Craver, Xiaofei Xu and Pierre Byrne

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