Irish PM says it will take months for EU travel to return to normal

FILE PHOTO: Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar speaks at a count centre, during Ireland's national election, in Citywest, near Dublin, Ireland

It will take months not weeks for COVID-19 restrictions to be lifted and travel around the European Union to return to normal, Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar told parliament on Thursday.

Ireland, which is part of a Common Travel Area with the United Kingdom but not a member of the European Union’s Schengen free travel area, is considering strengthening public health requirements for visitors from abroad, Varadkar said.

“While it is our policy to resume normal travel for business, leisure, study and visits to friends and relatives (around the EU) as soon as it is safe to do so … it will be months, not weeks before this is possible,” he said.

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