Germany Declares UK a Virus Variant Region

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  • People queue outside of a Costco store in Watford, as the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues, Britain, March 19, 2020. Despite the British government and supermarkets saying that there will be sufficient supplies for everyone, many hundreds of people stood in line outside the warehouse close to the north-west of London to buy food and other items. REUTERS/Paul Childs

    People queue outside of a Costco store in Watford, as the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues, Britain, March 19, 2020. Despite the British government and supermarkets saying that there will be sufficient supplies for everyone, many hundreds of people stood in line outside the warehouse close to the north-west of London to buy food and other items. REUTERS/Paul Childs

    TEMPO.CO, JakartaGermany's public health institute on Friday declared Britain and Northern Ireland a virus variant region, requiring anyone entering the country from the United Kingdom to quarantine for two weeks on arrival.

    Cases of a coronavirus variant of concern first found in India continued to climb in Britain. read more

    "We want to play it safe," a German government source said. "In this important phase of the vaccination campaign, the entry of problematic mutations must be avoided as far as possible."

    The classification, which takes effect from midnight on Sunday (22:00 GMT Saturday), means the quarantine rules also apply to people with full vaccination protection and those who have recovered from COVID-19.

    Health Minister Jens Spahn said earlier this month that a third wave coronavirus infection in Germany "appears to be broken", but government officials are being careful. read more

    "If we want to keep pushing down infection rates, we need to prevent contagious viral variants from jeopardizing this positive trend," a spokesman for the Health Ministry said.

    "This step is hard for the UK, but it is necessary to prevent the rapid spread of the Indian variant in Germany," he said, adding that only when more people have been vaccinated is Germany armed against such a danger.

    Read: UK-Indonesia Discuss the Next Pandemic, COVAX, and Multilateralism

    REUTERS