The federal government is planning further measures to curb the spread of the highly contagious mutants of the coronavirus. On Wednesday, according to SPIEGEL information, the cabinet discussed a ban on transport and entry for people from areas where the mutant is rampant. Such a regulation would currently apply to Great Britain, Ireland, South Africa, Brazil and Portugal, but countries such as Denmark or the Netherlands could follow very soon, according to government circles.
It is still unclear how exactly a “mutation area” will be defined, i.e. how widespread the more dangerous virus lines must be for an entry freeze. The Robert Koch Institute should make a proposal for this.
Exceptions to the travel ban should apply to commuters and diplomats, and freight traffic should also remain unaffected. In addition to controls at the airport and on the train by the federal police, there should be no stationary controls in border traffic on the road, but only punctual controls via the veil manhunt. The planned ban does not apply to German citizens, they can always enter.
Departure is still possible
The proposal for the ordinance is currently being agreed between the departments, it said, and a decision could be made on Friday. According to reports, there are some concerns about the plans in some departments. The aim of the regulation is also to make airlines more accountable. According to government sources, up to 250 violations of entry regulations, such as mandatory testing, were recently registered with 16 airlines. Now there should be talks with the airline bosses.
An extensive shutdown of scheduled air traffic is currently not considered, it said from government circles. The legal hurdles for an exit ban would be high; it would not be proportionate in view of the current pandemic.
With the planned regulation, the previously applicable rule for flights from areas in which there are mutants would be tightened. Already now, a test is mandatory for entries from South Africa, Brazil, Great Britain, Ireland and Portugal before departure, and travelers must also enter themselves in a database to check the quarantine. The new regulation would also affect transit passengers who airlines to Germany would then no longer be allowed to take with them.