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Malta prohibit all visitors who aren’t fully vaccinated against COVID

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Malta will prohibit all visitors from entering the country beginning Wednesday unless they are completely vaccinated against COVID-19, according to Health Minister Chris Fearne.

“We will be the first EU country to do so,” Fearne said at a press conference. “However, we must preserve our society.”

He was speaking after every day since Monday, the little Mediterranean island has seen a doubling of new COVID-19 cases.

Tourists were only allowed to visit Malta if they were completely vaccinated or had a negative PCR test. The lone exemption is British visitors, who were already required to be completely vaccinated due to the high frequency of the Delta strain in that country.

Fearne claimed the recent increase in new cases was due to tourists who were unvaccinated despite having a negative test before boarding the plane.

The vast majority of them were students of English language schools. On Wednesday, such schools will be compelled to close.

The minister said Malta only recognised vaccination certificates issued by the European Union and Britain.

According to him, the EU’s so-called “green certificate” presently certifies persons who have been properly vaccinated, tested positive for the virus, or have recovered from it.

“From Wednesday we will only respect that section of the EU certificate concerning people being fully vaccinated,” he stated.

Unvaccinated children between the ages of 5 and 12 will be allowed to enter Malta if they have a negative test and are accompanied by fully vaccinated parents.

Malta has fully vaccinated 79 percent of its adult population and is aiming for an 85 percent vaccination rate.

In June, Malta had several days with no new COVID-19 cases, but the number has surged dramatically this week, reaching 96 on Friday. The rate of positive tests has climbed to 1.18 per 100.

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