Ban on travel to Mexico not needed now, says EU

April 30th, 2009 - 11:56 pm ICT by IANS  

Luxembourg, April 30 (DPA) The European Union is not planning to ban travel to Mexico because of the outbreak of swine flu there, diplomatic sources said Thursday at an emergency meeting of EU health ministers in Luxembourg.
Individual member states have the right to bring in travel restrictions if they think this will help prevent the disease spreading, but the EU as a whole is not going to bring in a ban, diplomatic sources said.

Ahead of the meeting, France was the most vocal of a number of EU member states calling for a blanket ban on flights to Mexico, arguing this would limit the spread of swine flu across Europe.

“France is proposing a ban on flights going to the most important flu area, that is, a ban on flights to Mexico,” French Health Minister Roselyne Bachelot said as she arrived at the meeting.

“It is clear that a ban on flights coming from Mexico could be counter-productive, as attempts to avoid it could make it harder to trace people who might be infected,” she said.

But member states such as Germany, Spain and Britain opposed any such move, arguing that it would not be effective, since the disease has already reached Europe.

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