France to require coronavirus tests for those entering the country from US


French Prime Minister Jean Castex announced Friday that the country will require those visiting from the United States and 16 other countries to present a recent negative coronavirus test or take one upon arriving to French airports and seaports.

Castex, who recently assumed the role of prime minister amid a reshuffling of President Emmanuel Macron‘s Cabinet, told reporters that the on-the-spot testing will start immediately and is expected to be fully operational by Aug. 1, according to France 24.

Under the new policy, any visitor who cannot produce a recent negative test result or refuses to be tested upon arrival will be placed under a two-week quarantine. 

Besides the U.S., the countries the new policy applies to are: Algeria, Bahrain, Israel, India, South Africa, Kuwait, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Panama, Peru, Serbia, Turkey, Madagascar and Brazil. Morocco, which is experiencing a surge in cases, could likely be added to the list, Castex said. 

Earlier this month the U.S. was also excluded from a list of countries that the European Union determined were safe to travel to based on their number of new COVID-19 cases.

Castex reportedly said the policy applies to “French citizens who live in these countries or citizens of these countries with an established residence in France”

The list is updated regularly, and the U.S. is still not on it, though China — where the virus was first identified — is now tentatively on it.

The U.S. has more coronavirus cases than any other country in the world, at more than 4 million confirmed cases, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. France, which saw a surge in cases earlier in the year, has confirmed 206,433 cases and 30,081 deaths. 

Tags Coronavirus coronavirus pandemic Coronavirus testing COVID-19 Emmanuel Macron France travel travel bans travel restrictions
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