The European Union Commission has released a list of 54 countries that qualify for travels into Europe Union countries, excluding Nigeria.
The list which followed the gradual easing of COVID-19 restrictions, came ahead of the planned reopening of its borders to international travellers on July 1. The United States and few other countries were also excluded.
An online information portal, Schengenvisainfo.com reports that citizens from Nigeria, Brazil, Qatar, the US and Russia would not be allowed to travel into Europe until the epidemiological situation in their countries with regards to COVID-19 improves.
The countries whose citizens have been granted permits into Europe as the union open its borders that were shut to curb the spread of COVID-19, include Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Australia, Bahamas, Bhutan, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Canada.
Others listed are Monaco, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Palau, Paraguay, Rwanda, Saint Lucia, Serbia, South Korea, Tajikistan, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Vatican City, Venezuela, Vietnam, Zambia, China, Costa Rica, Cuba, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Dominica, Egypt, Ethiopia, Georgia, Guyana, India, Indonesia, Jamaica, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Lebanon and Mauritius.
Speaking on the development, the EU Commission spokesman, Eric Manner said the union had the right to choose who would enter its borders. He added that it was based on health criteria.
“The European Union has an internal process to determine from which countries it would be safe to accept travellers” he said
The EU commission on June 11, presented its recommendation on the reopening of internal Schengen borders on June 15, so that Europeans could travel freely within the borderless areas just as they did before the COVID-19 pandemic.