The World Health Organization (WHO) informed that the European countries have been registering a sharp increase in COVID-19 cases, the rapid lifting of the COVID-19 curbs is the main reason for the COVID surge in the EU states.
The latest subvariant of the Omicron variant, known as BA2, has been circulating at a high rate in several countries, especially in France, Italy, Ireland, Cyprus, Greece, and Germany.
Speaking at a press conference held in Moldova, WHO Regional Director for Europe, Hans Kluge, said that he was optimistic but cautious at the same time about the progress of the COVID-19 pandemic, suggesting that he expected the infection cases to increase.
According to the data provided by WHO, the countries mentioned above have been registering an average of over 450,000 infection cases over the last seven days.
France registered 617,343 new infection cases in the last seven days. During the same period, Germany registered 1,561,794 new points, Italy reported 492,283 new cases, Greece registered 153,886 new cases, Ireland registered 36,473 new cases, and Cyprus registered 25,858 new cases.
Ireland is one of the most recent countries to lift its COVID-19 restrictions. Since March 6, all travellers have been permitted restriction-free entry. This means that Ireland currently allows access to all travellers, even those who do not hold a valid vaccination, recovery, or test certificate.
France has also relaxed some of its restrictions. Since March 14, travellers and French citizens have been able to access different public places and events without being required to wear a face mask.
In addition, the same has also abolished the requirement to present proof of vaccination when entering bars, restaurants, nightclubs, museums, theatres, fairs, exhibitions, and stadiums, among others.
The other countries mentioned above – Italy, Cyprus, Greece, and Germany – have also lifted some of their restrictions.
Italy has been applying less stringent entry rules for all travellers, including those from third countries.