European Union Reopens Borders To 15 Nations Including China, US Excluded

Travellers from Australia and 13 other 'safe' countries to be allowed into the EU

EU releases list of 14 “safe” countries for travel

The EU said China is "subject to confirmation of reciprocity", meaning it must lift all restrictions on European citizens entering China before it will allow Chinese citizens back in.

The EU is set to announce a list of third countries which it will be reopening its external borders to, as COVID-19 restrictions are relaxed.

The 27-member bloc is expected to give outline approval to leisure or business travel from Wednesday to 14 countries beyond its borders when they vote on the list by midday Brussels time (1000 GMT), the diplomats said.

The European Union will reopen its external borders to 14 countries from 1 July, however the USA has been excluded from this travel list, released on 30 June.

The list is to be revised every 14 days, with new countries being added and some even dropping off depending on the extent of the spread of the coronavirus pandemic there and how far these countries are able to control the transmission of the virus.

Russia, Brazil and Turkey, along with the United States, are among countries whose containment of the coronavirus is considered worse than that of the European Union average and so will have to wait at least two weeks.

Pink supermoon seen around the world
Of this year's 13 lunar perigees, this is one of only two lunar perigees that comes closer than 221,830 miles (357,000 km). The pink supermoon rises behind the Chariot of Glory sculptural group in central Saint Petersburg, Russia April 7, 2020.

European Union envoys to Brussels have launched a written procedure which would see the list endorsed Tuesday as long as no objections are raised by member countries.

The restrictions are to be gradually lifted starting July 1, as the infection rate recedes - at least in Europe - and some countries hoped for close European Union coordination.

In a widely-panned Oval Office address in March, Donald Trump announced a partial European travel ban as a way to protect Americans from the coronavirus outbreak. The list published today is not legally binding, though most states are expected to follow it. Greece had reportedly objected to the idea of disallowing Americans to visit, but later acquiesced.

It is still unsure whether Morocco will take the same decision and allow visitors from its neighbor across the Strait of Gibraltar, given the recent continuous increase of COVID-19 cases in the country.

The United States is now the country most affected by COVID-19 with more than 125,000 deaths - while Europe believes it has passed the peak of its outbreak.

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