Germany bans travel from Britain over Covid variant

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Germany banned travel from Britain starting Saturday due to concerns over a variant of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).

Germany classified Britain as an “area of variant of concern,” and banned travel into the country to prevent virus spread, a post on the German Embassy’s website shows.

“There are local outbreaks occurring again, including cases of more infectious variants such as the Indian variant at present,” the post read.

The Embassy noted exceptions to the ban for German citizens and persons remaining in the airport transit area while transferring from one flight to another.

“We looked at all available data and details,” German Ambassador Andreas Michaelis tweeted early Saturday. “We did not take this step lightly.

Since March 30, all plane travelers to Germany have had to present a negative Covid-19 test that was taken up to 48 hours prior to departure. Starting on Sunday, anyone arriving in Germany will also have to show a negative Covid-19 test upon entry and must quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.

The B.1.617 variant accounts for 80 percent of Covid-19 cases in India and up to 20 percent of infections in Britain, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health professor David Peters said during a call with reporters Thursday.

 

The World Health Organization has called it a “variant of concern” since it may be more transmissible and resistant to vaccines, a television network reporter. Covid-19 infections and death
have surged in India, and the variant has spread to more than 50 countries since It was first discovered in India in October.
Britain has more than 4.4 million Covid-19 cases and the most Covid-19 deaths in Europe at 127,978 deaths, according to the Johns Hopkins University global tracker of cases and deaths.

 

Germany has 3.6 million cases and 87,320 deaths from Covid-19, the same tracker shows.

 

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