Ban on flights from India, 16 other countries extended
A ban on passenger flights from India which was set to expire on Saturday was extended until May 15. The Dutch government issued the decision on Friday evening, also announcing the extension of flight bans regarding South Africa and South America.
The India flight ban began on April 26, though days earlier the Cabinet had denied such a ban was needed. It went into effect after average coronavirus infections in India rose from 15 thousand daily in early March to hundreds of thousands daily by late April.
Authorities in India confirmed another 400 thousand coronavirus cases on Saturday. That is in addition to a total of about 6.6 million infections reported in the South Asian country during the month of April. The extension was issued based on advice from the RIVM and the Outbreak Management Team (OMT).
“In line with earlier advice from the RIVM on April 12, it is recommended to maintain the flight ban as long as quarantine advice is poorly observed and a well-monitored mandatory quarantine for travelers from countries where worries coronavirus variants are common is not realized”, outgoing Minister of Infrastructure and Water Management, Cora van Nieuwenhuizen stated in a letter to the Tweede Kamer.
The Cabinet also decided to prolong halting flights from passenger jets originating in South Africa, as well as certain countries in South America and the Caribian. This includes Argentinia, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, French Guyana, Guyana, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, Uruguay and Venezuela.