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European Council Recommends U.S. Travel Ban

The European Council suggests all their member states refuse to open borders to American travelers this summer. The committee is basing their decision on the spread of COVID-19 compared to the infection rate in European countries.

The European Commission finalized their travel restriction list, and is recommending member states close borders to American travelers until further notice. The travel restriction recommendation list was distributed on Tuesday, June 30, 2020, and excludes lifting restriction on travelers from the United States.

Fifteen Nations on First Allowed Travel List

The European Council’s first travel restriction list names 15 countries, from which inhabitants should be allowed entry starting July 1. Nations on the list include Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand and South Korea. China is also on the list, but is conditional on the confirmation of reciprocity. For the sake of simplicity, the council is considering residents of Andorra, Monaco, San Marino and The Vatican as European Union residents.

As previously reported, nations with heightened COVID-19 cases are remain on the recommended travel restriction list. Joining the United States on the travel restriction list are Brazil and Russia. The list will be re-evaluated every two weeks, as situations change around the world.

Although this is a recommendation and not a mandate, the European Council is strongly recommending all member states adopt the travel ban list. The council is also recommending the four Schengen-associated countries of Iceland, Lichtenstein, Norway and Switzerland adopt the travel restrictions. According to the official recommendation handed down from the European Union Council presidency, the goal is to re-open borders safely and stop the spread of COVID-19.

“Border control is in the interest not only of the Member State at whose external borders it is carried out but of all Member States which have abolished internal border control,” the commission wrote in their statement. “Member States should therefore ensure that measures taken at the external borders are coordinated in order to ensure a well functioning Schengen area.”

Border Opening Based on COVID-19 Cases

In order to welcome banned travelers once more, the European Council is re-evaluating situations based on three criteria. First, a nation must demonstrate a reduced number of COVID-19 cases. The council suggests the number of new cases of COVID-19 over the preceding two-week period should be lower than or close to the European Union average per 100,000 inhabitants.

Countries should also show a stable or decreasing trend in new COVID-19 confirmed cases, and demonstrate a coordinated response to the novel Coronavirus pandemic. In particular, the council recommends “testing, surveillance, contract tracing, containment, treatment and reporting.”

Although the travel restrictions will continue to apply to Americans, there are some exceptions. The council recommends European Union citizens and family members be allowed to enter, as well as long-term EU residents and their family members. Those with “essential functions or needs” should also be allowed to enter the national bloc.

The U.S. Department of State has not publicly commented on the council’s recommendations.

htb July 3, 2020

That's a very misleading headline, as if the US were at the center of that policy. The reality is that Europe ist opening up to only a few counties based on a risk assessment. The US are among many counties who didn't make the cut.

PaulMSN July 2, 2020

FiveMileFinal, all the diseases you mention kill fewer people per year, so while the death rate for some after infection is higher than COVID-19, far fewer people have died, while over 500,000 have died from COVID-19 in a little over half a year. Your comparison is invalid, and that's why we should be taking these measures for this pandemic.

BC Shelby July 1, 2020

@ Gigantor "Canada for the next 12-18 months." Bugger if the Crime Don gets re-elected, that was to be my "Plan A". He's going to take this nation down with him just like he did his businesses and casinos and likely incite greater civil unrest if not a civil war..

carlosdca July 1, 2020

The infections and cases are completely out of control here in the US and we are as bad as Brazil. 127,000 people dead, 2.6 million cases and increasing every day. Of course they are going to ban US travelers. It does not make me happy, it makes me sad that we have not conquered this virus yet.

taffygrrl July 1, 2020

We have been outside of the US this entire time in a very safe country, but our visa will run out in a few months here. We are looking for somewhere else to go that is relatively safe, but we're concerned that due to our passport we won't be accepted even though we are in a country that is being welcomed from everywhere else. Everyone focuses on how deadly the virus is, but it's not just death that you need to worry about. I know someone who has died from it. I know someone who has "recovered" but still can't hold a coffee cup. His hands just don't work anymore. I know someone who still has brain fog months after. Then there's the people whose kidneys have failed, or who now have diabetes. This thing is no joke. It doesn't just kill, it also wipes out as many of your bodily systems as it can. Healthcare costs for every country with a big infection load will go through the roof after this.