The federal government in Berlin has removed Tyrol from the list of virus variant areas. South Tyrol’s governor Kompatscher also hopes that the burner will open.
Germany lifts its strict entry restrictions for Tyrol on Sunday again. As the German government announced on Friday, the Austrian state, as well as the Czech Republic and Slovakia, have been removed from the virus variant list. This eliminates the basis for the factual entry ban that has been in force since mid-February. Federal Chancellor Sebastian Kurz and the Tyrolean Governor Günther Platter (both ÖVP) reacted with satisfaction.
Thus, from the point of view of Germany, all of Austria is “only” a corona risk area again. On the other hand, Germany tightened the rules for its larger neighboring country France. This also counts as a high incidence area from Sunday, for which a test is mandatory upon entry.
Kurz praises “excellent cooperation”
“After intensive talks in the last few days, we were finally able to convince Germany to end the disproportionate border controls,” said Landeschef Platter. The situation at the borders had been “an enormous burden and so unacceptable for us” in the past few weeks.
That is why they have “massively pushed for an end to the measures”. “This pressure at all levels has had an effect. The border controls will now be terminated earlier than last by Germany,” said Platter. Such a “disproportionate interference” in the European free movement of persons could and should no longer occur, emphasized the governor.
Kurz saw the decision as a sign that the measures in Tyrol against the South African mutation had taken effect. In a statement he thanked Platter and EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen for the “excellent cooperation in combating the pandemic”, for example in vaccinating the Schwaz district.
“During last week’s talks with Chancellor Angela Merkel and at the meetings with Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer and Health Minister Jens Spahn, it became clear that the border controls are about to be lifted due to the better infection situation. I am pleased that the controls are now over is official, “wrote Kurz.
What’s next at the Brenner?
The South Tyrolean governor Arno Kompatscher expressed the expectation that Austria will now also relax the regime on the Brenner border that has been tightened as a result of the German decision. “Governor Günther Platter has already assured me that the abolition of border controls at the German-Austrian border will also make those at the Brenner obsolete and will therefore be lifted,” said Kompatscher on Friday afternoon according to stol.it. Kompatscher also spoke to the Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio and Health Minister Roberto Speranza, so that Italy would treat Tyrol and Austria in the same way as the other EU countries in the future.
Inpatient controls have been in place at the borders since February 14, after Germany declared Tyrol a virus variant area. Only Germans and foreigners with a residence and residence permit in Germany were allowed to enter. There were exceptions, for example, for truck drivers and cross-border commuters with systemically relevant professions. You had to present a negative corona test that was no older than 48 hours.
The German controls had caused massive political displeasure in Tyrol. Again and again there was talk of harassment. Most recently, the case of a heart patient who was to be treated in Füssen, Germany caused a sensation. But because a document for the crossing was missing, the ambulance was stopped and first had to turn around. In the heart clinic, he finally had to undergo an operation immediately. Platter himself was also forbidden in advance from a planned transit across the German corner due to a corona summit in the Vienna Federal Chancellery.
(WHAT / dpa)