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Greece, Poland Lift Coronavirus Travel Restrictions for Russians for a Short Time

Flights will resume for short periods before the lists are reassessed. Sergei Konkov / TASS

Greece and Poland have updated their coronavirus travel restrictions to allow Russian citizens to cross their borders for two-week periods as Russia’s virus caseload topped the one million milestone.

Poland’s government has removed Russia from its latest list of countries subject to a travel ban, meaning flights will be able to resume from Wednesday. According to the Notesfrompoland.com news website, the Polish government is expected to update its travel ban list again on Sept. 15.

Greece will allow Russians to fly into the country between Sept. 7 and 21, according to a government decision cited by the RIA Novosti news agency. The number of entries is capped at 500 Russian nationals per week, who will be required to provide a negative Covid-19 test result within three days of entry and complete a detailed personal information form.

Belarus has also announced agreements to gradually reopen air and land borders with Russia at an unspecified time in the future. Moscow has not yet publicly commented on Minsk’s announcement.

Several media reports have said that Russian citizens without authorization used the land border with Belarus to travel to Europe. The European Union barred Russian travelers from entering when it reopened its outside borders on July 1.

Ex-Soviet Belarus has officially confirmed nearly 72,000 coronavirus infections, with Poland reporting almost 68,000 cases and Greece confirming 10,500. Russia has the world’s fourth-highest number of cases, with more than a million confirmed infections.

Russia closed its borders and grounded most international flights in late March to head off the spread of Covid-19, allowing only special evacuations of Russian citizens from abroad and government-authorized flights.

Russia gradually lifted travel restrictions to Britain, Turkey, Switzerland and Tanzania starting in August.

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