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US urges Americans to avoid travel to Italy, Greenland over COVID-19 concerns

US urges Americans to avoid travel to Italy, Greenland over COVID-19 concerns

WASHINGTON - The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Monday advised Americans against travel to Italy, Greenland and Mauritius, citing COVID-19 concerns.

The CDC now lists 84 destinations at "Level 4: Very High" classification, including nearly all of Europe. The State Department on Monday also added Italy and Mauritius to its "Level Four: Do Not Travel" advisories.

Italy reported 98 coronavirus-related deaths on Monday against 66 the day before, the health ministry said, while the daily tally of new infections fell to 12,712 from 19,215.

Italy has registered 134,929 deaths linked to COVID-19 since its outbreak emerged in February last year, the second-highest toll in Europe after Britain and the ninth-highest in the world. The country has reported 5.24 million cases to date.

Italy historically has been one of top foreign tourist destinations for Americans.

The United States imposed new rules, effective Dec. 6, requiring international air travelers arriving in the United States to obtain a negative COVID-19 test within one day of travel.

Under the prior rules, vaccinated international air travelers could present a negative test result obtained within three days of their day of departure.

Effective Nov. 29, the White House barred nearly all foreign nationals from entering the United States from eight southern African countries including South Africa over fears of the spread of the Omicron variant, but has not extended those travel restrictions to other countries where the new variant has been discovered.

The White House has repeatedly said it is reviewing the African travel restrictions on a regular basis to determine if they should be lifted. —Reuters