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Ireland sets new entry rules for travellers

Dublin, Jan 6 (IANS) Starting from Thursday, in-bound travellers to Ireland will no longer need a Covid-19 test if they are fully vaccinated against or have recovered from the disease, the government announced.

Those outside the new regulation requirements must provide a negative result of a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test taken within 72 hours before arrival in Ireland, Xinhua news agency reported citing the government as saying in a sattement.

From Thursday, fully vaccinated or recovered travellers into Ireland are only required to present evidence of a valid Digital Covid Certificate or other acceptable proof showing vaccination or recovery status, said the statement.

Prior to this, travellers coming to Ireland had to provide valid proof of a negative antigen test result taken within 48 hours or a PCR test taken within 72 hours before arrival in response to the emergence of the Omicron variant.

The government has dropped the requirement for vaccinated or recovered people because Omicron has become a dominant variant in Ireland and the old measure has a limited impact on the spread of the virus, Prime Minister Micheal Martin told the local media.

The Department of Health on Wednesday reported an additional 17,656 confirmed cases of Covid-19, bringing to 884,855 the total number of such cases in the country, which means that nearly 18 per cent of Ireland's entire population has been infected with the disease.

To date, there have been a total of 5,952 deaths.