European Countries Ban Travel from UK Over New COVID-19 Strain

Several European countries have imposed travel bans to and from the United Kingdom due to the growing concern of a new COVID-19 strain that was first detected in southeast England.

Several European countries have imposed travel bans to and from the United Kingdom due to the growing concern of a new COVID-19 strain that was first detected in southeast England.

The Netherlands, Italy, Germany, France, Ireland, Belgium, Bulgaria, Turkey, and Switzerland have separately announced different travel restrictions to contain the spread of a new strain of COVID-19 that has caused a surge of cases in the U.K., specifically in London and southeast England.

The new variant has also been detected in the Netherlands in early December, according to a statement from the Dutch health ministry, which further said that a flight ban will take place until Jan. 1, citing that the new strain must be “minimized as much as possible.”

The Italian health ministry also reported that the new strain has been detected in Rome on Dec. 20 with the patient already in quarantine. On the same day, Italian Foreign Minister Luigi di Maio announced that flights from the U.K. are suspended until Jan. 6. 

The German transport ministry also banned planes from the U.K., starting from midnight on Dec. 20, with the exception of those carrying cargo. It is not immediately clear when the travel restrictions would last.

Meanwhile, France suspended all travel links, including freight transport, from the U.K. for 48 hours from 11 p.m. Greenwich Mean Time Zone.

The Irish government has also imposed a 48-hour travel ban from the U.K. while Belgium imposed a 24-hour ban on flight and train arrivals from the U.K.

Bulgaria has suspended flights to and from the U.K. until Jan. 31. Switzerland has also banned flights from the U.K. “until further notice.”

Turkish Health Minister Fahrettin Koca announced a temporary flight ban from the U.K., as well as from Denmark, the Netherlands, and South Africa.


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