Gabon’s government has suspended the issuing of visas to European Union travellers amid the Covid-19.
According to Gabon’s officials the move is due to the EU’s decision to also prevent its citizens from visiting EU countries.
Only visitors from four African countries are being allowed entry into the European Union territories effective July 1, 2020.
The EU released a list of some 14 countries whose citizens are deemed “safe” to be let in amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Algeria, Morocco, Rwanda and Tunisia are the only African nations named on that “safe” list.
The fourteen countries are Algeria, Australia, Canada, Georgia, Japan, Montenegro, Morocco, New Zealand, Rwanda, Serbia, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia and Uruguay.
The EU said its criteria took into consideration the epidemiological data and for now only 14 countries and China subject to reciprocal deal will be allowed to have their citizens visiting the EU.
Gabonese foreign affairs ministry said it had only applied the “the principle of reciprocity”.
That means nationals of the 27 EU member states will not be allowed into Gabon moving forward.
Minister Alain Claude Bilie By Nzé sent a circular to diplomatic missions communicating the change in issuance of visas.
He said “As a measure of reciprocity, I have just asked the Ambassadors and Consuls of Gabon not to issue tourist visas to nationals of the States (27) of the EU who wish to travel to Gabon, until further notice.”
Par mesure de réciprocité, je viens de demander aux Ambassadeurs et Consuls du Gabon de ne pas délivrer de visas tourisme aux ressortissants des États(27) de l’#UE qui désirent se rendre au Gabon, jusqu’à nouvel ordre.
— Bilie-By-Nze (@BilieByNze) July 1, 2020