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Mandatory hotel quarantine will be in effect 'by next weekend'

Most of the high risk countries are in South America and Africa.

Image: Sasko Lazarov via RollingNews.ie

MANDATORY HOTEL QUARANTINE for travellers arriving into Ireland from certain countries will come into effect by next weekend, a minister confirmed today. 

Speaking to RTÉ News, Minister for Public Expenditure Michael McGrath said significant progress has been made on the issue. 

Health Minister Stephen Donnelly will be outlining the exact process in the coming days, McGrath said.

There are currently 33 countries on the Government’s list of ‘high-risk’ countries.

On 26 February, MInister Donnelly designated an additional 13 countries and territories as “Category 2 Countries and Territories”. These countries/territories are: Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Paraguay, Panama, Peru, Suriname, Uruguay and Venezuela.

The 20 other currently on the list are: Angola, Austria, Botswana, Brazil, Burundi, Cape Verde, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Republic of South Africa, Rwanda, Seychelles, Tanzania, United Arab Emirates, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

All passengers arriving into Ireland from these 33 countries must now complete a full mandatory 14-day period of self-quarantine

“We’ve made a huge amount of progress on this issue,” McGrath told RTÉ News today.

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“Agreement has now been reached with the selected operator and in the next day or so Minister Stephen Donnelly will outline further details of the operational nature of the hotel quarantining, with a view to quarantining in hotels coming into effect later this week.

“This is a very complex issue and it does involve very significant interference with people’s civil liberties, but it is for the greater good and that’s why the Government was determined to do this properly and to get it done.”

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