Acting German Health Minister Jens Spahn has confirmed that there will be no new tightening of border controls within the European Union, amid growing concerns about the spread of the Omicron variant that has recently affected many European countries.
Since the new form of COVID-19 has begun to affect other countries, some governments have imposed travel bans and entry restrictions, such as those imposed on arrivals from South African countries. However, when it comes to intra-European restrictions, Spahn emphasized, “I don’t see that today. I don’t see the necessity of that either,” as reported by Germany Eye, TheSchengen.com.
It is about distinguishing between people who have completed the vaccination process and those who are not vaccinated in many areas of life, he said.
“This has nothing to do with vaccination bullying,” Spahn noted.
He stressed that the excessive number of people who have not been vaccinated against the virus could overburden health care services in European Union countries.
Nachdem ich als #COVID19-Genesener im Mai eine Impfdosis bekommen habe, erhielt ich heute meine Auffrischungsimpfung. Freue mich, dass wir gestern mit über 100.000 # Booster-Impfungen einen Tagesrekord erzielt haben. Meine Bite an alle: Jetzt informieren & Impfschutz boostern! pic.twitter.com/HHaCrIqqp1
– Jens Spahn (@jensspahn) Oct 28, 2021
Currently, the entry regulations in place in EU member states already distinguish between people who have been vaccinated against the virus and those who have not, with the latter being subject to more stringent entry requirements when planning travel to other countries.
People who have not completed their vaccination are subject to restrictions when traveling to other areas if they do not follow entry requirements such as testing or quarantine rules.
The rapid spread of the Omicron variant has led the authorities in the European Union to impose more stringent preventive measures in response to the current epidemiological situation.
Previously, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen called on EU member states to temporarily halt travel to and from territories recently affected by the new COVID-19 virus.
On the recommendation of the EU Commission, Denmark urged all people not to travel to Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe, as these territories were affected by the Omicron variant.
In addition, other European countries such as Slovenia and Hungary have imposed quarantine requirements for all people traveling from Omicron affected areas.
TheSchengen.com previously reported that other European countries such as France, Lithuania and the Czech Republic have imposed entry restrictions on arrivals from seven countries in South Africa due to the epidemiological situation in them.
However, the government’s decision to impose such a ban in an attempt to stop the further spread of the virus has not been welcomed by the World Health Organization (WHO).
The organization recently called on governments to keep their borders open, despite the increase in the number of infections related to the Omicron variant.
The WHO recommendation was also supported by the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
The assembly called on the state authorities to find alternative ways to stop the spread of the virus instead of imposing bans and other restrictions.