Germany lifting travel warning for 29 European nations on 15 June

Germany's Foreign Minister Heiko Maas

The German government has approved the lifting of travel warnings for 29 European countries, to take effect on 15 June, Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said on Wednesday. The warnings - imposed worldwide in March due to the coronavirus outbreak - are set to be lifted for Germany's 26 fellow EU member states apart Spain where restrictions on visitors will extend beyond 15 June.

Britain and three non-EU members of the borderless Schengen zone - Iceland, Switzerland and Liechtenstein - will also see the German warnings lifted, according to a document approved at a cabinet meeting in Berlin on Wednesday.

Like Spain, Norway - the fourth non-EU Schengen member - has restrictions on arrivals in place beyond 15 June, so is not included. Discussions with destination countries would continue in the next fortnight, and Germany would watch the infection rate in other countries carefully, Maas said.

"I cannot provide the travel advice in a concrete form for each country at the moment," he said. "Travel warnings are not the same as travel bans, and travel advice is not the same as invitations to travel," he warned.

Maas acknowledged that this decision "raises great hopes and expectations".

Maas said the travel advice will make clear if people in Germany should avoid travelling to a country.
"We will provide the best available information on each country in our travel advice," he said. As of June 15th, the guidelines will be updated daily as needed.

Germany will also be watching contagion data very carefully, he added, saying that warnings could be reintroduced if new infections were to reach 50 per 100,000 people in a week in the country concerned.

More on this subject: Coronavirus

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