The International Air Transport Association (IATA) called for governments to follow World Health Organisation’s (WHO) advice and immediately rescind travel bans that were introduced in response to the Omicron variant of coronavirus.
Public health organisations, including the WHO, have advised against travel curbs to contain the spread of Omicron.
“After nearly two years with Covid-19 we know a lot about the virus and the inability of travel restrictions to control its spread,” IATA Director General Willie Walsh said.
“But the discovery of the Omicron variant induced instant amnesia on governments which implemented knee-jerk restrictions in complete contravention of advice from the WHO – the global expert.”
According to Walsh, the goal is to move away from the uncoordinated, evidence-absent, risk-unassessed mess that travellers face.
“As governments agreed at ICAO and in line with the WHO advice, all measures should be time-bound and regularly reviewed. It is unacceptable that rushed decisions have created fear and uncertainty among travellers just as many are about to embark on year-end visits to family or hard-earned vacations.”