Japan added to EU's safe travel list

Photo: EPA

EU governments agreed on Wednesday to add Japan to the still very short list of countries from which they will allow non-essential travel, Reuters reported. At the same time Britain will still be exempt from it. The Japan's inclusion will take effect in the coming days.

EU countries are recommended gradually to lift travel restrictions for the current seven countries on the list - Australia, Israel, New Zealand, Rwanda, Singapore, South Korea and Thailand. Biut individual EU countries can still opt to demand a negative Covid-19 test or a period of quarantine.

The EU last month eased criteria for adding new countries to the list, by changing to 75 from 25 the maximum number of new Covid-19 cases per 100,000 people in the previous 14 days. Britain met that revised target but was left off the list because of an increase in Covid-19 cases arising from an infectious coronavirus variant first identified in India.

EU diplomats said Britain could be added to the list, depending on the course of the variant, in mid-June, when a larger group of countries are expected to be considered. France and Germany have imposed quarantines on UK visitors and Austria banned British tourists, while Portugal and Spain now welcome them.

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