translated from Spanish: France extends until April 19 suspension of flights with Brazil

The French Government reported on Wednesday that the suspension of flights with Brazil announced on Tuesday to prevent the expansion of Brazilian covid variants, considered especially dangerous, is extended until next Monday, April 19.” Taking into account the health situation in Brazil, the travel of people between the two countries is prohibited until April 19, 2021 (…), with the exception of the travel required for the transport of goods,” the decree published wednesday in the Official Journal of France, just this Wednesday morning, the last two flights from Brazil to Paris arrived before the suspension was applied. Air France’s flight from Sao Paulo landed at Paris’s Charles de Gaulle Airport at 7.35 local (5.35 GMT) and the one leaving Sao Paulo arrived five minutes later at the same facility. An Air France spokeswoman, who said she could not offer the number of passengers, explained to Efe that they have so far cancelled their journeys between France and Brazil in one direction and another for today’s day and that they expect slogans from the authorities for the following days. In an interview this week, France’s Secretary of State for Transport Jean-Baptiste Djebbari had estimated that only about 50 passengers entered the country daily from Brazil during the pandemic, up from about 7,000 daily before the covid crisis. Prime Minister Jean Castex announced on Tuesday that flights with the South American country would be suspended “until new order” because “the situation in Brazil is absolutely dramatic and the danger of the variant poses real difficulties.” In recent days, pressure on the Government for passenger arrivals from Brazil had grown significantly, with public interventions by healthcare professionals and opposition members demanding protective measures. Until now, to travel from Brazil you had to have a reason of imperative need, to be French or resident in France.You had to present a PCR test performed at most 72 hours before take-off and when landing undergo an antigen test at the French airport, as well as commit to remaining in isolation for ten days, although in practice there were no control mechanisms. The suspension of flights with Brazil by France represents a change in France’s policy, which until now had been privileged in border closures to avoid unilateral measures that would not have been agreed at European level. This morning French President Emmanuel Macron organizes from 9.00 local (7.00 GMT) the Defence Council that every Wednesday brings together in the Elyseo Palace the members of his government who pilot the Covid crisis.

Original source in Spanish

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