By Agnes Szucs
BRUSSELS (AA) – Belgium is banning non-essential travels to and from the country as of Wednesday to curb the spread of coronavirus, the nation’s prime minister announced on Friday.
Alexander De Croo said only essential journeys will be authorized for Belgian residents and foreigners until March 1.
Traveling for business, studies, family purposes or ceremonies like funerals will still be permitted, but those who decide to leave will have to show a declaration of honor at the border and carry the document with them everywhere.
The government decided to introduce a travel restriction in order to prevent the third wave of coronavirus in a fear that the already existing recommendation against non-essential travels would not prevent people from traveling in the upcoming carnival school break.
“We have seen new, highly contagious variants of the coronavirus. That’s why we must build dams,” the prime minister said.
The ban has been introduced although the epidemiological situation has improved.
According to the research center Sciensano, the rate of new infections decreased by 6% between Jan. 12-19
In the past 24 hours, 2,571 new infections were registered in Belgium.