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In a statement published Friday by the prime minister's office, travellers from South Africa, Lesotho, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Namibia and Eswatini, will not be able to enter French territory, regardless of their vaccination status.
"People who have traveled during the last 14 days in one of these countries are invited to report to the authorities and to carry out a (real time) RT-PCR screening test as soon as possible," it added.
Also, the French government advised people who plan to visit these countries to postpone their trips.
"As we do not want to have to diagnose this variant on national and European territory, even if we do not know more about its dangerousness, the decision was taken to immediately suspend all flights from southern Africa for at least 48 hours," French Health Minister Olivier Veran said, cited by BFMTV.
According to him, the new variant B.1.1.529 has not yet been detected in Europe.