PARIS (Reuters) – France will tighten restrictions on unvaccinated travelers from a series of countries to counter a rebound in COVID-19 infections, while opening its doors to those who have received all of their vaccines, said Prime Minister Jean Castex on Saturday.
The move comes as France faces a rapid rise in new coronavirus infections and President Emmanuel Macron tries to convince French citizens to accept vaccinations which he says are the only way to stop the virus and to put the country back on track.
From Sunday July 18, unvaccinated people from the United Kingdom, Spain, Portugal, Cyprus, the Netherlands and Greece will have to present a COVID-19 test dating less than 24 hours before the journey to enter France.
Currently, tests can be as old as 48 hours for UK travelers and 72 hours for other countries listed.
Castex’s announcement follows Britain’s decision on Friday to maintain quarantine rules for travelers from France, which were due to be relaxed on Monday.
Fully vaccinated travelers from any country of departure will be able to enter France without testing from Saturday, Castex said in a statement.
“Because the vaccines are effective against the virus, and in particular its Delta variant, the constraints weighing on travelers benefiting from a complete vaccination schedule with a vaccine recognized by the European Medicines Agency (Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca or Janssen ) will be released from this Saturday, July 17, regardless of the country of origin, ”he said.
People from Tunisia, Mozambique, Cuba and Indonesia will also need to justify their trip, show they tested negative for COVID-19 before departure, and then self-quarantine for 10 days after their departure. arrival. They join a “red list” of countries for which similar rules are already in place.
After dropping from more than 42,000 per day in mid-April to less than 2,000 per day at the end of June, the average number of new infections in France has again rapidly increased to now stand at nearly 11,000 per day .