Joe Biden to reinstate Covid travel restrictions on travellers from UK

25 Janvier, 2021, 09:17 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Mr Biden is also reimposing an entry ban on nearly all non-US travellers who have been in Brazil the United Kingdom Ireland and 26 European countries

The United States is closely watching the more infectious variant of COVID-19 after British officials warned that it may also be more deadly, two top USA health officials said on Saturday, cautioning more data is needed.

Biden will also on Monday extend the ban to travelers who have recently been to South Africa amid warnings that new, more transmissible coronavirus variants are already establishing themselves in the United States, the official said, confirming U.S. media reports.

Then-President Donald Trump directed on January 18 those restrictions on Brazil and Europe be lifted effective Tuesday but Biden's proclamation will rescind that decision. In a flurry of actions since taking office Wednesday, Biden unveiled a new USA strategic plan to curtail the outbreak and signed numerous executive orders to boost vaccines and increase mask use, among other measures.

Scientists on Wednesday said the South African variant may reduce the efficacy of current vaccines, which also raises the prospect of re-infection.

"The new variant I really worry about is the one that's out there but hasn't been spotted", he said, adding that the U.K.is offering its genome-sequencing capability to other countries to help them identify new strains.

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Both the Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines require two doses, and figures so far reflect those given the first dose. Van-Tam said that the immune response is "only fully trained up around two or three weeks after you have each of your two jabs".

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Also Sunday, the Israeli government gave the green light to the agreement with Morocco, ahead of its final approval by parliament. The UAE and Israel agreed to normalise relations in August, a deal forged largely over shared fears of Iran.

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The South Africa variant has not been discovered in the United States, but another variant - originating in the United Kingdom - has been detected in several states. Hancock said the government is conducting a vaccine trial on the South African variant to study its response to the inoculation, and that he's concerned about new variants developing elsewhere. The order also requires that all USA -bound passengers ages 2 and above get negative COVID-19 test results within three days before traveling. "Testing before and after travel is a critical layer to slow the introduction and spread of COVID-19 and emerging variants".

The new president last week tightened mask wearing rules and ordered quarantine for people flying into the United States, as he seeks to tackle the country's worsening coronavirus crisis.

Before Biden took office, incoming White House press secretary Jen Psaki in a tweet criticized Trump's decision to rescind the bans he had implemented.

"We're in a national emergency".

The US restrictions barring most visitors from Europe have been in place since mid-March when Trump signed proclamations imposing them, while the Brazilian entry ban was imposed in May. The restriction, along with the new South Africa ones, mean most non-US citizens who have been in one of those countries within the last 14 days are not eligible to travel to the United States.

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