Share article:
Share article:

Belgium closes borders to UK travellers from midnight

Credit: Belga

From midnight, Belgium will close its borders to travellers coming from the United Kingdom for a period of 24 hours, Prime Minister Alexander De Croo announced on Sunday.

Anyone arriving by train or plane will no longer be able to enter Belgium, De Croo said on Flemish television programme De Zevende Dag. Eurostar connections from the UK will also be shut down temporarily.

The decision is a “precautionary measure” in response to the flight ban that was imposed by the Netherlands, to prevent the spread of a more infectious mutation of the coronavirus, which has seen the UK return to strict lockdown measures for the holiday period.

For the time being, the Belgian measure only applies for 24 hours, as scientific consultations on this virus mutation are still ongoing. “However, it could be extended, if that proves necessary,” he added.

Related News:

 

“There are still many questions to be asked, about the mutation itself and about whether or not it has already reached the European mainland. We do not yet have a conclusive answer,” De Croo said.

Belgium is also in discussions with France on the matter, as Eurostar trains from the UK arrive on the European mainland in France, from where they can travel on to Belgium. That is why preventive roadside checks will also take place, according to De Croo.

For travellers coming from the UK – which is already a red zone – before midnight on Sunday, compliance with the existing quarantine measures will be monitored more closely. “To those arriving, we will give very clear information about what is expected of them,” said De Croo.

Last night, The Netherlands was the first European country to ban flights from the UK because of the mutated virus variant.

Dutch Minister-President Mark Rutte immediately asked for European consultation.

Maïthé Chini
The Brussels Times

Latest news

‘No scientific basis’ for giving everyone third dose, vaccine expert says
The head of Belgium's Vaccination Taskforce has argued that there is not enough scientific evidence to support the Flemish government's decision to ...
Re-introducing face masks indoors considered as Covid-19 situation worsens
Belgium's council of ministers will hold an emergency meeting on Monday to discuss the worsening epidemiological situation, and reintroducing face ...
Threats of strike action could affect Brussels’ STIB network from Monday
Brussels public transport operator STIB's trams, buses and metros could be affected from Monday 25 October onwards as the union representing the ...
Brussels bars linked to alleged sexual assault vouch to improve women’s safety
The management of the two bars in Ixelles, which made headlines in recent days after several young women reported that they had been drugged then ...
European Council: Decisions on Covid-19 and energy and debate on other issues
At the two-days summit which ended on Friday, the European Council adopted conclusions on COVID-19, digital, energy prices, migration, trade and ...
Flanders ‘water bomb’ could cause €2 billion in damages and affect thousands
The next "water bomb" or heavy rainfall over Flanders could cause damages estimated at around €2 billion, and could affect up to 100,000 people in ...
Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine 90% effective in 5 to 11-year-olds
The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is 90.7% effective in preventing symptomatic forms of the coronavirus in children aged five to 11, Pfizer announced on ...
Belgian airport named best for cargo in Europe
Brussels Airport has been named the best airport in Europe in a 2021 roundup of the best cargo airports across the world. The Asian Freight, ...
NASA plans first return mission to Moon in February 2022
The United States space agency, NASA, has announced that it will be aiming to launch its first, uncrewed mission to the moon, Artemis 1, in February ...
New, reportedly more contagious Delta mutation being monitored
A new mutation of the Delta variant of the coronavirus, which is reported to be more contagious, is being monitored by health authorities in the ...
Angèle releases new single: ‘Bruxelles je t’aime’
Belgian singer Angèle has unveiled her latest song ahead of the release of her new album, due later this year. 'Bruxelles je t'aime' (Brussels I ...
23 million chickens and 1.7 million pigs: Climate experts call for livestock cut
Flander's livestock needs to be drastically cut to save the climate and reach the emission reduction targets, according to the latest advice from the ...