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Covid-19: Rwanda travelers welcome to EU next month

(The New Times)-Rwanda is among four African countries whose citizens will be allowed into the Schengen area from July 11 once countries there start opening their borders, reports say.

According to reports from Europe, a list drawn up on the basis of countries with a similar epidemiological situation with Europe excludes the African continent with the exception of four countries: Rwanda, Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia.

The Schengen area includes; Germany, Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.

This comes as, across Europe, governments started to open their borders after weeks of closure during the coronavirus pandemic.

In the past few weeks, the border situation in the 27-member bloc remained a mixed picture. 

Every country had its own rules and timetable for re-opening. Commercial flights resumed in Albania on June 15.

But on Saturday, June 27, the EU appeared to have agreed how it will assess which countries meet health standards – one of the criteria for entry. 

In the UK, reports indicated that blanket restrictions on non-essential overseas travel will be relaxed from July 6.

The EU is reportedly considering reopening borders to visitors from more than 10 countries outside the bloc including Japan, South Korea and Canada from July 1, after months of travel restrictions over the coronavirus outbreak.

The European Commission, the bloc’s executive body, earlier recommended the reopening of external borders from July 1.

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