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Reopening Borders: EU bars travelers from US

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The European Union has announced plan to open its borders to visitors from 15 countries, except travelers from the United States, Brazil or Russia. 

While disclosing this on Tuesday June 30, 2020, the EU stated that it was  trying to implement a policy to ptotect the health of the visitors to its member nations. 

The list of nations that EU countries have approved includes Australia, Canada and New Zealand, while travelers from China will be permitted if China reciprocates.

According to the EU, travelers' country of residence, not their nationality, will be the determining factor for their ability to travel to countries in the European Union. 

"While the policy will not be legally binding, all 27 member nations will be under pressure to comply. 

"If not, they risk having their European peers close borders within the bloc, which would set back efforts to restart the free travel-and-trade zone that is fundamental to the club’s economic survival," an EU official said. 

Southern European countries in particular have been eager to salvage their ravaged and vital tourism industries.

The United States was the first country to bar visitors from the European Union in March as the pandemic devastated Italy and other European nations.

The bloc implemented its own travel ban in mid-March and has been gradually extending it as the pandemic spreads to other parts of the world.

It had set July 1 as the date to begin allowing non-European Union travelers to return, even as Portugal and Sweden, both members, and Britain, which is treated as a member until the end of the year, still grapple with serious outbreaks.

Others, such as Germany, are seeing new localized outbreaks drive up their national caseloads.

Britain was exempt from consideration for the list because of its current E.U. status, and countries like Spain and France are considering  allowing direct flights from Britain to bring in crucial tourism revenue.

The list of safe countries will be reviewed every two weeks to reflect the changing realities of the coronavirus outbreaks in individual nations, officials said, and countries could be added or removed from the list.

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