2 hours ago
The United States announced that it will relax restrictions on the entry of air passengers due to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19; New Coronavirus) epidemic from November. People who have been vaccinated from China, Brazil, India, the United Kingdom, and the European Union will be allowed to enter the United States. The United States currently announces 33 countries on the list, including 26 Schengen countries.
Passengers must be tested for the virus before boarding, but they do not need to be quarantined after entry. Jeff Zients, the White House Coordinator for Covid-19 Response, said Monday (September 20) that the new policy will be based on individuals rather than countries and will be more robust.
The United States took the lead in imposing an anti-epidemic entry ban on Chinese travelers in early 2020, and then extended it to other countries.
Britain and Europe: “Unexpected” good news
The sudden relaxation of entry restrictions in the United States surprised many countries. A British official described this to the BBC as “unexpected”.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson wrote on Twitter: “This is a great encouragement to commerce and trade. It is good news that relatives and friends on both sides of the ocean will be reunited.”
German Deputy Chancellor Olaf Scholz said that the U.S. decision “to invest in Germany and Europe, our export products and even transatlantic relations is great news.”
European and American Airlines shares were encouraged by Washington’s announcement, and prices rose. British Airways (British Airways) parent company is IAG? ? ? The stock price rose 10% on Monday.
Shai Weiss, President of Virgin Atlantic, described this as a “major milestone” in the recovery of the aviation industry. American Airlines President Doug Parker welcomed Washington’s “Science “For this” decision to relax travel restrictions.
“Health and safety have always been our common priority. We look forward to welcoming more travelers to embark on business or leisure international travel under simple and smooth conditions, and connect with family and friends again.”
There are also European travelers who are excited. French entrepreneur Stephane Le Breton, who has not set off to New York for a long time due to the epidemic, told the Associated Press: “This is a happy day. Big Apple, I am coming!”
There are also netizens on Chinese Weibo that welcome the US decision, but there are also users who question and express disdain.
Guangdong Finance and Economics blogger Huang Yongyao said: “I am not interested in traveling to the United States and entering the country for the time being. Let’s wait until you control the epidemic!”
“In today’s global integration, no one can stay outside. I also hope that the United States can control the epidemic as soon as possible and attend the children’s graduation ceremony by then!”
Liaoning science and technology blogger “Shangshan Fleming Zhou Haibo” said: “In view of the current epidemic situation in the United States, I still want to restrict entry? Hasn’t it been completely flat a long time ago?”
BBC North America Affairs Editor Joe Sopel (Jon Sopel)
Over the past few months, a joint working group has been trying to relax travel restrictions. As far as I know, the content of the work is nuanced.
But until last Friday (17th), almost no one in Washington (even in the Biden administration) expected today’s announcement. What has changed?
The Biden administration has noticed that European allies are increasingly complaining, especially about Afghanistan. In recent days, France’s dissatisfaction with the AUKUS submarine deal has become even more problematic. Don’t forget that France is the oldest ally of the United States.
This week Biden will meet with Johnson and even a series of foreign leaders attending the United Nations General Assembly in New York, and their invitation cards all have a requirement: lift the travel ban.
A diplomatic channel pointed out that in the past weekend, the United States weighed two counteracting forces: showing weakness against the new crown virus made some Americans angry; continuing to alienate its increasingly sensitive European allies.
With the data no longer supporting the ban, the weekend’s decision was finally announced. On the one hand, it is unexpected, on the other hand, it is reasonable.
Details to be determined
Under the current ban, non-US citizens who have been in the UK, some EU member states, China, India, South Africa, Iran, and Brazil in the past 14 days are not allowed to enter the country. The new policy requires passengers to present a vaccination certificate, a negative test for the new coronavirus within three days before departure, and contact information. Those who meet these conditions do not need to undergo quarantine.
US officials said that the new policy will not apply to children who have not yet been approved for vaccination, and there are other exceptions.
Washington also did not say whether it will only recognize the new coronavirus vaccine approved by the United States-that is, exclude vaccines made in China and Russia. Zintz said this will be decided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
U.S. citizens who have not been fully vaccinated can still return to their country, but they must be tested for the virus before departure and after arriving home.
In addition, the new policy does not apply at land borders, that is, land entry into the United States from Canada or Mexico is still restricted.
Since the outbreak of the new crown epidemic, the United States has recorded more than 42 million confirmed cases and more than 670,000 deaths. In an interview with the BBC on Monday, White House Covid-19 consultant Dr Anthony Fauci urged Americans to hurry up and get vaccinated.