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Belgium Announces New Rules For International Travel |The Republican News

Credit: Belga

By Maïthé Chini

Belgium gave the official go-ahead for the announced relaxations from 9 June and introduced the latest travel rules, announced Prime Minister Alexander De Croo during a press conference on Friday.

“Today, the Consultative Committee mainly looked ahead, towards a summer of which we have already had a taste in the past few days, thanks to the better weather,” De Croo said.

“The fact that we can look forward with fewer worries is because we have all behaved safely in recent weeks, but also because of the vaccination campaign,” he said. “This was truly a collective effort.”

“The figures show this positive development,” De Croo said. “That is why we have decided to continue with the first stage of the summer plan.”

From Wednesday 9 June, bars, restaurants and all other businesses in the hospitality industry will be allowed to also open their indoor areas to clients.

Both the indoor areas and the terraces can already open as early as 5:00 AM, and can stay open until 11:30 PM. The current rules will continue to apply: a maximum of four people at a table (unless your household is bigger), with tables 1.5 metres apart.

“The main focus of this meeting, however, was on travel,” De Croo.

The rule remains that people returning from a green or orange zone do not have to undergo a quarantine period. “This was already the case today, and this stays the same.”

From 1 July, travelling to and from red zones will be possible with the European Digital Covid Certificate for travel within the EU. “If you are a Belgian resident and you return from a red zone (in the EU), you can do so with that certificate without further obligations,” he said.

“The condition is that you have been fully vaccinated for at least two weeks (two shots, except with the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine), or that you can present a negative PCR test or a recovery certificate,” De Croo said.

Those who have not been fully vaccinated for at least two weeks will still have to get a PCR test, starting from children aged 12.

However, the government has put an “emergency brake” on the spread of infectious and dangerous variants, meaning that Belgian residents must always observe a 10-day quarantine if they return after having been in a high-risk area in the past two weeks.

This applies to everyone, including those who have been vaccinated, De Croo stressed. Non-Belgian residents who come from such a high-risk area are not allowed to enter.

Additionally, to make sure everything happens safely in the coming months, the Consultative Committee also issued ten basic “tips” for everyone:

1. Get vaccinated,
2. Observe the hygiene measures: wash your hands regularly, sneeze in your elbow,
3. Get tested if you feel sick,
4. Do a self-test if you have not yet been vaccinated. “It is just polite when you visit someone,”
5. Give preference to outdoor activities,
6. Choose smaller groups. “The risk of infection is lower in groups of five than in groups of 50,”
7. In a group where everyone has been vaccinated, you can remove the face masks,
8. Keep ventilating rooms,
9. Keep the social distance as much as possible,
10. Use the Digital Covid Certificate when travelling, and follow the rules in the country you are visiting.

“If we keep this in mind, we can look forward to a beautiful summer without too many worries,” De Croo said. “Do not forget to enjoy it. It has been a difficult period.”

“Initially, it was decided to keep the different closing hours for the hospitality industry,” said Flemish Vice Minister-President Hilde Crevits. “However, due to the progress of the vaccination campaign and the upcoming European Football Championship, it was decided to opt for the same hour after all.”

“The European Football Championship could cause people sitting outside and inside to mix in case of different hours,” she said, adding that “the government does not want to take that risk.”

Additionally, people will also be allowed to physically go to work one day a week again from 9 June, confirmed Crevits. As of July, teleworking rules may be further relaxed.

“It is a necessity for people who have been working from home for months, or even a year, that they can now go to work one day a week again,” she said. “It does require a great deal of responsibility from employers and employees.”

“The efforts we have all made mean that we have all lived very cautiously in recent months,” said Federal Health Minister Frank Vandenbroucke. “The good results now are due to the vaccination campaign, but also to that caution.”

“The ten recommendations that the Prime Minister made just now are actually another call to continue that caution,” he added. “With more freedom comes greater personal responsibility.”

“We must also protect this freedom. We must protect it against the import of viruses from other countries. That is why we still want to be strict with regard to travellers entering our country,” Vandenbroucke said, referring to the conditions applying for children from 12 years old.

“Some neighbouring countries will also impose these requirements for children from 6 years old,” he said. “These children will not have been vaccinated, and neither will a number of other people, and it would be unfair to make it difficult for these people.”

“Therefore, we are proposing that children aged 6 to 17, and adults, will have two free PCR tests available from 1 July until the end of September,” Vandenbroucke said. “We are trying to be economical, so two tests for adults only if they have not yet received an invitation to get vaccinated.”

“In concrete terms: if you have not yet received a date for your second dose – or for your only dose of Johnson & Johnson – you are entitled to free two PCR tests,” Vandenbroucke said. “The offer will remain valid for three weeks after you have received a date. It will be an easy system, with a code.”

From 13 August, mass events in the open air, like Pukkelpop, can take place with 75,000 visitors again, he specified. Attendees have to present a Covid Safety Ticket (showing that they have been fully vaccinated at least two weeks previously), or a negative Covid-19 test before entry. Offering rapid antigen tests on-site could also be a possibility.

The next Consultative Committee meeting will be held on Friday 11 June, when the next stages of the “Summer Plan” from July will be fleshed out.

Consultative Committee will announce Belgium’s latest measures from 6:15 PM
Friday, 04 June 2021

Credit: screengrab/cabinet of Prime Minister Alexander De Croo

The Consultative Committee will announce the latest changes to Belgium’s coronavirus fighting measures during a press conference from 6:15 PM, according to the cabinet of Prime Minister Alexander De Croo.

The ministers met on Friday from 2:00 PM, to evaluate the current rules and discuss the upcoming relaxations from 9 June.

The press conference – available online – is expected to focus on regulations for Belgian and European travellers, as well as on the first stage of the “summer plan” going into force. The broadcast will be available here:

More Consultative Committee News:

Don’t do abroad what you wouldn’t do in Belgium, warns Van Gucht

Travellers coming (back) from a red zone must be fully vaccinated: reports

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New EU Countries Become Red Travel Zones For Belgians From Friday |The Republican News

Credit: Flickr/Jorge Franganillo (CC BY 2.0)

Belgium has added several new areas in the European Union, including Copenhagen, Lisbon and Geneva, to its list of red zones for travellers from Friday, according to the latest updates of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

This means that Belgium will require travellers returning from these zones to be tested and quarantined from Friday 25 September at 4:00 PM. Up this week, Belgium also banned all non-essential travel to red-zone destinations, but from now on, travel will only be “strongly discouraged.

Both Malta and Luxembourg will become red zones from Friday, as will the Copenhagen region in Denmark, the Lisbon metropolitan area and central region in Portugal, and the Geneva canton in Switzerland.

The Dutch province of Utrecht, and the Austrian states of Tyrol and Vorarlberg will also turn red.

For the Czech Republic, the Northwest, Central Moravia and Moravia-Silesia regions will be coloured red, and for Hungary, the Western Transdanubia, Southern Great Plain regions will too.

In France, the regions of Ariège, Calvados, Doubs, Eure, Eure-et-Loir, Haute-Loire, Landes, Loire-Atlantique, Lot-et-Garonne, Marne, Saône-et-Loire, Somme and Tarn will turn red as well.

For the United Kingdom, West Central Scotland will now also be considered a red area.

(Maïthé Chini
The Brussels Times)

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BREAKING: COVID–19: Atiku’s Son Tests Positive, Infects Bauchi Governor, Bala Mohammed, His Entire Estate In Abuja

Former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar

The worst case of corona virus may have landed in the hands of Nigerian health officials as the son of former Vice president, Atiku Abubakar, Mohammed infects many at once.

The son of Atiku just returned from the USA and had suspiciously a high temperature but took no precautions to self-isolate or go in for a test.

He rather proceeded to his house in an estate in Abuja, where he with his children and wife had contacts with several kids and members of the estate.

He refused to go in for a test and kept on having contacts with as many people as possible in and around his estate in Abuja.

His sister got worried and called NCDC personnel and they came and tested him and he was pronounced positive by the officers of the NCDC.

This made the NCDC to ask every residents in the entire estate to self-isolate in their respective homes as this could prevent a widespread of this virus. Right now, families with their children are in panic and wailing.

A source who spoke to The Republican News confirmed that the entire families in the estate have been quarantined in their homes to stop further spread until they are all tested and isolated for a given period of time.

Meanwhile, the state governor of Bauchi has made public the fact that he met the son of Atiku, Mohammed Atiku Abubakar in the same flight from the United States and they mingled with the rest of the passengers. Gov. Bala Mohammed confirmed that he has gone for screening to ascertain if he is positive or without the COVID-19.

In a press release by Bauchi state government, it is confirmed that the governor had contact with the son of Atiku, who tested positive, so, the governor has gone into self-isolation. Though, he has been tested, it is not clear yet what his status is.

Bauchi state governor, Alhaji Bala Mohammed

The former Vice president, Atiku Abubakar in a tweet confirmed that his son tested positive for corona virus and has been taken in for treatment.

The right thing to do now is to get all his family members and the entire residents of his estate and all those in the same flight he flew from the USA to Nigeria quarantined and tested.

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BREAKING NEWS: COVID –19: Nigeria Records First Death From Virus Infection | The Republican News

By Nsikak Nseyen

Nigeria on Monday confirmed its first coronavirus death.

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) made the confirmation on its official Twitter handle.

The patient is a 67 year old man who returned to the country following medical treatment in the UK

”The 1st #COVID19 death in Nigeria has been recorded. The case was a 67 year old male who returned home following medical treatment in the UK, the tweet said

”He had underlying medical conditions- multiple myeloma & diabetes & was undergoing chemotherapy

”Our thoughts are with his family.”it added.

Meanwhile Nigeria now has 36 cases of coronavirus.

NCDC said the new cases were recorded in Abuja, Lagos and Edo.

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Where Is Our President? — Fani-Kayode Asked As Buhari Spoke On “COVIKK ONE NINE PHIRUS

President Muhammadu Buhari

Femi Fani-Kayode has taken on president Mohammadu Buhari following a viral video of COVID-19 address on Sunday.

Though, majority of Nigerians displayed worry over Buhari’s silence over the ravaging Coronavirus pandemic, including Nigeria Lawmakers, urged he update on the efforts in place so far to put to an end to virus.

On Sunday, the media aides released a video containing message by the president addressed Nigerians on the need to take precautions while the government do the needful.

Chief Kayode in his reaction shared on his official Facebook page showed dissatisfaction on the president’s video message.

He said Nigerians were expecting president Buhari to touch on the Coronavirus and give reasons everyone should not nurse fears rather he spoke on different topic referred to as “COVIK ONE NINE PHIRUS “.

He argued why the president could not know the name of a virus facing every continent, blamed his media handlers.

His post reads: