New strain: World begins to close borders
The dominoes began to fall quickly after South African health authorities informed the world of the discovery of the omicron variant of the coronavirus in late November.
The Biden administration instituted controversial travel bans on arrivals from eight southern African countries. Travelers found themselves unexpectedly stranded. And now U.S. officials announced they will again tighten travel rules.
The travel bans announced on November 26 prohibit non-citizens from eight southern African countries from entering the United States. They are Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland and Zimbabwe.
Going to southern African nations while worldwide bans are in effect can get you banned from going to other countries. For example, the United Kingdom does not allow entry to anyone who has been to the “red list” countries, which include Angola and Zambia in addition to the eight listed above, except its own returning citizens.
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Nigeria on the defensive after U.S. travel ban launches accusations of security breachU.S. considers Nigeria ‘high risk’ in terms of ‘terrorist travel’
#Trumps new #travelbans, includ 4 #African countries, #Nigeria, #Sudan, #Tanzania & #Eritrea,Sen @KamalaHarris former Dem pres candidate, declared on Sunday. “They are, without a doubt, rooted in anti-immigrant, white supremacist ideologies.” https://t.co/Vf9w8cWOBV
“Trump’s new travel ban includes four African countries, Nigeria, Sudan, Tanzania and Eritrea,” Democratic Sen. Kamala Harris said Sunday. “It is undoubtedly rooted in anti-immigrant and white supremacist ideologies.”
They join Syria, North Korea, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Venezuela and Yemen, which have been subject to a controversial U.S. travel ban since 2017, widely known as the “Muslim ban,” as most are Muslim-majority countries.
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Joe Biden’s administration said people from South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Lesotho, Esuatini (or Swaziland), Mozambique and Malawi will be banned from entering U.S. territory as of Monday.
Canada also banned travelers from the same southern African nations, except Malawi, from entering the country on Friday. “We must act quickly to protect Canadians,” Health Minister Jean Yves Duclos told a news conference when he announced the restrictions for the seven countries.
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The cascade of country restrictions began Thursday night when the United Kingdom announced it would temporarily suspend flights from South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Lesotho and Eswatini.
Singapore has opted to ban entry to all non-residents from Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe, while nationals and permanent residents returning from any of these countries will be required to spend 10 days at home. Malaysia has also taken similar measures.
Meanwhile, Germany plans to declare South Africa a “virus variant area” as of Friday night, which will mean that airlines will only be able to enter from the country to repatriate German nationals.
The United States will restrict travel from South Africa and seven other countries as of Monday. Following advice from Dr. Anthony Fauci and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Biden administration will restrict travel from South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Lesotho, Eswatini, Mozambique and Malawi.