People walk on the Trocadero Plaza in front of Eiffel Tower (file photo) Photograph:( AFP )
The deal will allow anybody living in the EU's 27 countries to secure a digital health pass by the end of June that displays their vaccination status, results of Covid-19 tests or recovery from a coronavirus infection
EU member states reached a deal paving the way for a Covid-19 certificate to open up travel in Europe, just as the operators of the iconic Eiffel Tower in Paris announced a July reopening.
The deal will allow anybody living in the EU's 27 countries to secure a digital health pass by the end of June that displays their vaccination status, results of Covid-19 tests or recovery from a coronavirus infection.
"This is an important step towards restarting EU free movement as safely as possible, while providing clarity and certainty for our citizens," said EU health commissioner Stella Kyriakides.
The certificate is seen as a key tool to save the European summer vacations and, as if to celebrate the news, the operators of the Eiffel Tower, one of the biggest tourist attractions on the continent, announced it will reopen on July 16 after several months of closure due to the pandemic.
Visitor numbers will be limited to 10,000 a day to meet social distancing requirements, fewer than half of their pre-Covid levels, operator Sete said.
However, a World Health Organization director warned that the progress against the coronavirus pandemic remains ‘fragile’ and that international travel should still be avoided.
"Right now, in the face of a continued threat and new uncertainty, we need to continue to exercise caution, and rethink or avoid international travel," WHO's European director Hans Kluge said, adding that 'pockets of increasing transmission' on the continent could quickly spread.
(With inputs from agencies)