Paris (AP) – France will impose new entry restrictions on travelers from India to fight the country’s contagious virus, an official said on Wednesday.
The restrictions are in addition to the four previously announced countries – Brazil, Argentina, Chile and South Africa – which will be implemented from this week.
Government spokesman Gabriel Atal confirmed that France would lift its internal embargo as scheduled on May 3, but would maintain its night curfew, which runs from 7pm to 6am. It will not reopen before mid-May, he said.
France suspended all flights from Brazil earlier this month in a bid to stem the spread of a new version of COVID-19 found in South America. Saturday’s time on Saturday should be replaced by severe travel restrictions, which now apply to the list of five countries, including a mandatory 10-day quarantine with police checks to ensure that those arriving in France comply with this requirement.
France also demands tougher tests for coronavirus on travelers from these countries who must pass a mandatory antigen test upon arrival, in addition to a pre-sitting PCR test.
The version first found in the UK is now responsible for about 80% of viral infections in France, while the first-seen version in Brazil and South Africa accounts for less than 4% of French infections. This was announced last week by the Minister of Health Olivier Veran.
Atal said on Wednesday that the number of new infections in the country was declining daily, but that on average it reached more than 30,000 people a day. With nearly 6,000 COVID-19 patients in intensive care units and near-capacity hospitals, Atal said France could be close to reaching its “peak”.
He noted the “encouraging” signs, but said it was “not enough”.
“The epidemic is declining twice as slowly as in November, especially because of the English version,” he said. “The pressure on hospitals is too strong.”
Kindergartens and elementary schools will open on April 26, as planned, after a three-month closure, followed by high schools on May 3, Atal said.
France intends to gradually reopen small shops, cafes and restaurants in mid-May.
President Emanuel Macron on Tuesday praised the acceleration of the vaccination campaign in the country, with more than 2.5 million holes injected last week.
France has reported more than 100.00 deaths during the COVID-19 epidemic.
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