Spain extends ban on UK, Brazil, South Africa arrivals over new coronavirus strains

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Spain on Tuesday extended its ban on arrivals from Britain, Brazil and South Africa until the end of March to avoid the spread of new coronavirus strains.

Only legal residents or nationals of Spain and the neighboring micro-state of Andorra are currently allowed in on flights from these countries.

The restriction on arrivals from Britain was imposed at the end of December to halt the spread of the highly contagious COVID-19 variant discovered there in November.

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The Brazil and South Africa arrivals ban came into effect on February 3.

The only exceptions are for passengers in transit who cannot leave the airport nor remain there longer than 24 hours.

It is the sixth time the ban on British arrivals has been extended.

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Other European nations have also imposed curbs on arrivals from the three nations due to fears that the new variants may spread more easily or contain mutations that allow the virus to evade the effects of vaccines.

Since February 22, all passengers arriving in Spain from Brazil or South Africa have been obliged to undergo 10 days of compulsory quarantine, or seven if they can show a negative test.

On March 8, that requirement was extended to arrivals from another 10 countries: Colombia and Peru, where there is community transmission of the Brazilian strain; and Botswana, Cameroon, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe where there is transmission of the South African strain.

Spain has been hit hard by the pandemic, recording over 71,000 deaths from more than 3.1 million cases.

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