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No plans to ban South American passengers as there are no direct flights into Ireland

Travellers from South America are no longer allowed to come into the UK, amid fears over a new virus variant first identified in Brazil.

Image: PA

TÁNAISTE LEO VARADKAR has indicated that there will be no ban on travellers from South America arriving into Ireland as there are no direct flights from that continent.

Travellers from South America are no longer allowed to come into the UK, amid fears over a new virus variant first identified in Brazil.

The UK’s new travel ban came into effect at 4am this morning.

There have been some concerns raised about the Brazil variant possibly being more contagious.

Scientists analysing the Brazilian variant believe the mutations it shares with the new South African strain seem to be associated with a rapid increase in cases in locations where there have already been large outbreaks of the disease.

During yesterday’s briefing, the National Public Health Emergency Team said no strain of the South American variant had been detected in Ireland.

Passengers arriving from South American countries are routed through other EU countries, or the UK, before arriving in Ireland.

When asked about the UK travel ban and whether Ireland would follow suit with restrictions, Varadkar said:

“There aren’t any direct flights from South America so that doesn’t arise but any one entering the State from any other part of the word from this weekend will have to have evidence of a negative PCR test.”

As countries in South America are listed as grey under Europe’s traffic light system map, travellers from countries such as Brazil will have to restrict their movements for 14 days upon arrival in the country.

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This period can be reduced if a person takes another PCR test five days later, that returns a negative result.

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