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Greece prime minister: ‘No need to impose additional restrictions on travel’ for Brits | Travel News | Travel

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Both German and French governments are plotting to try to stop British holidaymakers from travelling to all EU countries. Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron have said they might have to resort to banning Britons from visiting the European mainland.

Ms Merkel’s call for other EU countries to follow Germany’s lead comes due to the high level of infection in the UK of the Delta Covid variant.

However, Mr Mitsotakis slammed disagreed with the chancellor.

Speaking at the summit, he said: “Regarding the Delta variant, in my intervention I said that we should not adopt a logic of new restrictions but, on the contrary, accelerate the vaccinations.

“As I said yesterday, those who have been vaccinated are protected, those who have not been vaccinated are in danger.”

The Greek prime minister later spoke to journalists at the end of the summit, adding: “My personal assessment – which I believe is shared by the majority of the European Council – is that there is no need to impose additional restrictions on travel from countries where this mutation already exists and its spread is more pronounced.

“There is an answer to the question of variants – and in particular the Delta variants – and that is to speed up the vaccination process.”

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Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte sided with Mr Mitsotakis.

He said: “At the end that is up to the individual member states to take those decisions.

“We see some differences now, for example Malta and Spain, being a bit more lenient, maybe some other member states but that’s up to them, they can do that.”

Meanwhile, José Ramón Bauzà, former President of the Balearic Islands, said countries should focus on vaccination rates.

Mediterranean nations heavily reliant on tourism want to open their borders to Britons, while France and Germany have other ideas.

Ms Merkel said: “In Great Britain and Israel, who are further ahead with the vaccinations, we see strongly increasing incidence rates and we also see hospitalisations apparently increase with this variant.

“I can only continue to make a case to continue to be careful.”

Additionally, Mr Macron said there was a need to “stay vigilant” and “harmonise our rules on opening to third countries”, such as the UK.

Meanwhile, Ursula von der Leyen, the president of the European Commission, also highlighted the need for vigilance.

She said: “We are worried about the Delta variant. If you look at the UK, there the Delta variant is by now dominant, 90 percent of the infections are the Delta variant.

“It is rapidly progressing also speeding up here. The good news is that is that we see that the vaccination protects. Double vaccination protects very effectively against the Delta variant. And a single vaccination or single shot at the beginning, gives at least a reduction of severe illness.

“But with this Delta variant, we need to stay vigilant. We need to stay very coordinated while restrictive measures are concerned. The typical things like masks and distance have to stay in place. And we need to vaccinate, vaccinate, vaccinate – that’s the best strategy against these variants.”

France and Germany are currently on the UK’s amber list, meaning Britons should not travel to the countries without good reason, and must quarantine on return to the UK.


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