Coveney points to 'good news on the horizon' for international travel

ireland
Coveney Points To 'Good News On The Horizon' For International Travel
Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney, © PA Archive/PA Images
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Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney has hinted at the possibility of allowing non-essential international travel in the coming months, but warned any change in advice would be gradual.

Mr Coveney said there is "good news on the horizon" as international travel restrictions may ease over the summer months, however, the message for the moment remains that all but essential journeys should be avoided.

The European Commission is working on a green passport scheme, according to The Irish Times, which will make it easier for vaccinated people to travel within the EU, and the Irish Government are hoping to join the initiative, Mr Coveney said.

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The system is expected to be in place from June, at which time the Government and health officials will have to assess whether or not the easing of international travel restrictions poses too great a risk to the epidemiological situation here.

"I think that is still some way off, but certainly that is where this is going in terms of facilitating international travel at some point in the future," Mr Coveney said.

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Ahead of the announcement of the Government's plan to further ease restrictions over the coming months, which is expected next week, the Minister said they are taking a cautious approach, adding people should not be booking holidays abroad now.

"We will be cautious because the one thing I think the public won't accept is if we start going backwards again on the numbers because we have come out of restrictions too quickly in an effort to give people too much good news too quickly.

"You will get in the next ten days a pathway of what to expect over the summer months.

"We need to gradually emerge from those restrictions with caution. We still need to be aware we are living in a global pandemic, it hasn't gone away," he said.

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