Kenya has been listed as one of the countries whose citizens are barred from entering Europe. This comes as the European Union is preparing to reopen its external borders to 15 countires outside the bloc as early as Wednesday.
Other than Kenya the proposed list also includes 14 other countries; United States, China, where the virus originated, Algeria, Australia, Canada, Gerogia, Japan, Montenegro, Morocco, New Zealand, Rwanda, Serbia, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia, Uruguay.
Sources indicated that, diplomats who were not permitted to discuss the matter before the EU’s 27 member states had reached an agreement that EU governments have been given until lunchtime Tuesday to agree on the list of 15 countries allowed entry.
The list is included in a set of recommendations from the EU council to member states, which set out criteria for countries to meet before their nationals are allowed entry to the bloc and the methodology for meeting that criteria.
So for countries to be allowed entry they have to be having infection rates equal to or better than EU.
Each member state in the final assessment dictates border control rather than at an EU level in Brussels.
However, official of the EU hope that having the recommendation in place means the member states will reopen their borders in unison.
Currently, the US has the top number of confirmed cases and the highest number of deaths caused by COVID-19 of any country in the world. This is as confirmed by the Johns Hoplins University Coronavirus Resource Centre.
The diplomats noted that it was “highly unlikely” that the framework would be changed any time soon, which would mean a dramatic turnaround is needed in the US infection rate if it’s to be considered in any future decision.
Review of the decision is expected to be done by the EU every two weeks.