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Portugal, Sweden slap COVID entry ban on Israelis, including those vaccinated

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Portugal and Sweden have decided to bar entry to Israeli nationals amid soaring coronavirus infections in the Jewish state, a move some other European nations are expected to follow.

Israelis scheduled to fly Thursday to Portugal were prevented from checking in at Ben Gurion Airport. The Swedish ban will take effect on Monday, a representative from the Swedish embassy in Tel Aviv told The Times of Israel.

Though vaccination rates in Israel are among the world’s highest, Portugal and Sweden have their eyes on the elevated case numbers and aren’t making exceptions for Israelis who are vaccinated or recovered from COVID-19. The two countries only accept European Union vaccination certificates.

Their decisions came after the European Union on Monday removed Israel from a list of nations deemed “epidemiologically safe.”

Member states are not bound by the EU recommendation and Italy has taken a very different approach from Portugal and Sweden, deciding to bar unvaccinated Israelis but welcome those with Israeli vaccination certificates.

Epidemiologist Nadav Davidovitch, a........

© The Times of Israel

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