After the discovery of a new variant of the corona virus in the UK, Austria wants to stop air passengers from the UK from entering the country. The health ministry confirmed this as reported by oe24.at. “There will be a landing ban on flights from the UK. The details of this are currently being worked out.”
Currently, there are already strict requirements, the Ministry of Health in Vienna stressed: the UK is considered a state with an increased risk of infection, which is why there is a quarantine requirement for those entering the country. A free test from the ten-day quarantine is possible at the earliest after the fifth day.
Other countries also stop flights
Early Sunday morning, the Netherlands imposed a ban on flights carrying passengers from the United Kingdom, initially until Jan. 1. Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport saw cancellations of services to and from London on Sunday, the international airport said on its website Sunday. Schiphol is a major hub in Western Europe.
Belgium is also cutting flights and trains from the U.K. starting at midnight, a government official in Brussels announced Sunday. Government leader Alexander De Croo told VRT television that the suspension of air and train services would be in place for at least 24 hours. A similar move is being considered in Germany.
Variant out of control
The variant of the coronavirus discovered in the United Kingdom is a major concern for authorities. “It is out of control and we need to get it back under control,” Health Minister Matt Hancock told the BBC on Sunday. Authorities’ initial findings indicate the mutation is significantly more contagious than the previously known form.
However, he said there is no evidence that the variant causes more severe courses of the disease or a higher mortality rate. In addition, authorities have so far assumed that vaccines are also effective against the mutation.
Secretary Hancock said he is very concerned about the health care system. Currently, he said, there are more than 18,000 infected people in hospitals, nearly as many as at the peak of the first wave of infection in the spring. “That’s another reason why everyone needs to comply with the new rules and take personal responsibility,” he said. Hancock told the Sky News channel that everyone must act as if they were infected with Corona. “That’s the only way we’re going to get this virus under control.”
Because of the rapid spread of the new variant of the virus, a new shutdown with widespread curfews has been in effect in London and other areas in southeast England since Sunday, including for Christmas. It’s not impossible that the tougher measures will have to remain in place for months until widespread vaccination can be carried out, Hancock said.
- hp, with reports from oe24.at. piucture: pixabay.com
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