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COVID-19: Spain joins rising listing of nations to prohibit commute from UK over mutated pressure fears | UK Information

Countries around the world have imposed restrictions on travel from the UK due to fears of a new strain of the coronavirus.

Spain, Russia and India are among the latest countries to announce new measures.

It comes as France says it is working on a plan to “ensure that movement from the UK can resume” – after it banned travel including freight hauliers.

  • India will stop all flights from the UK until 31 December, starting on Wednesday
  • Russia is suspending all flights to and from Britain for a week
  • The Netherlands has banned flights with passengers from the UK until 1 January
  • Denmark has suspended all flights from Britain for 48 hours as of Monday morning
  • Norway has also stopped planes from the UK two days
  • Israel’s Prime Minister has order the country to “close the skies” after a meeting of the cabinet
  • Belgium has banned flights and rail travel from the UK for 24 hours with more clarity expected on Tuesday
  • Italy has banned air passengers from Britain until 6 January and also anyone who has transited through the UK in the previous 14 days. Residents of Italy will still be able to depart Britain to return home.
  • Austria has banned flights from the UK but the duration of the measure is not clear
  • Germany is banning flights from the UK for an unspecified duration
  • Spain will ban all entrants from the UK starting on Tuesday, although Spanish nationals will be allowed to return
  • Portugal says only Portuguese people and residents of the country can arrive from the UK. Everyone must show proof of a negative COVID test, which can be accessed at airports
  • Bulgaria is suspending flights from the UK until 31 January
  • Switzerland has announced a travel ban on all people arriving from the UK and South Africa
  • Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia have agreed to ban flights from the UK until 31 January
  • France will bar entry for 48 hours (from Sunday night) to those coming from the UK (and accompanied freight) by road, air, sea or rail
  • Malta is suspending all flights to and from the UK from Tuesday
  • Sweden is preparing to ban entry from the UK but the details are not yet clear
  • Greece has extended the self-isolation time for those arriving from the UK from three days to seven days
  • Turkey is suspending flights from the UK, Denmark and the Netherlands, with the last two countries among those where the new strain has also been found
  • Hong Kong has banned all flights from the UK, and also announced that people who had recently made the journey will need to quarantine for an extra seven days – taking the total isolation time to 21 days
  • Canada is banning flights from the UK for 72 hours
  • Saudi Arabia has suspended all international flights for travellers for a week
  • Oman has closed it’s land, sea and air borders
  • Kuwait has suspended all commercial flights, and will close its land and sea borderers until 1 January
  • Jordan has suspended all flights to and from the UK until 3 January
  • El Salvador has banned travellers who have been in the UK within the previous 30 days, including transit
  • Ireland has banned flights and ferries from the UK for 48 hours
  • The Czech Republic says arrivals who have spent at least 24 hours in UK territory will need to isolate
  • Colombia, Morocco, Chile, Finland, and Argentina have also banned travellers from the UK

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Lorries queue on M20 after France travel ban

A UK government spokesman said it was in contact with its European partners about the travel restrictions, but it was not immediately clear when or for how long they would last.

Boris Johnson said the fast-moving new variant of the virus, which he added is thought to be 70% more transmissible than existing strains, appears to be driving a rapid spread of new infections.

The prime minister put London and much of the South East, where the new strain is most prevalent, into a Tier 4 lockdown over the Christmas period in an attempt to get the disease back under control.

Viruses mutate regularly, and scientists have found thousands of different of mutations among samples of the virus causing COVID-19.

But many of these changes have no effect on how easily the virus spreads or how severe symptoms are.

Britain has alerted the World Health Organisation over the new variant, saying it has accounted for some 60% of London’s cases.

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Health Secretary Matt Hancock has warned the country is facing an “enormous challenge”, adding that the mutation was “out of control” and could see areas stuck in Tier 4 until the UK’s most vulnerable have been vaccinated.

The new variant has spread to every region of England, as well as parts of Scotland and Wales. It has been seen in some European countries and even as far away as South Africa and Australia.

In Australia, New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian said two returned travellers from the UK who tested positive to COVID-19 were found to be carrying the mutated variant of the virus.

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