The United Arab Emirates are the first country not to allow citizens to leave the country without the status of “full vaccination” against Covid-19. “Fully vaccinated” means: two injections and at least one booster vaccination. This could catch on worldwide.
Starting on January 10th, citizens of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) will no longer be allowed to leave the country if they do not have “full vaccination protection” against Covid-19 can prove. That means in plain language: Without the two basic syringes and at least one booster vaccination with the experimental Covid vaccines, you can no longer get out of the desert state, such a report. This makes the Arab country the first in the world to introduce such measures.
The UAE’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation announced the decision on Saturday in collaboration with the National Agency for Crisis and Disaster Management. Exceptions can therefore be made for those who cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons. According to the authorities, there should also be exceptions for “humanitarian cases” and travelers who want medical treatment abroad. But in the end the authorities will decide whether or not you can leave the country at all.
When is one “fully vaccinated”?
The country is nowhere near the first to introduce travel restrictions based on vaccination status. Most of the countries that have done this have formulated their regulations to deny unvaccinated people entry into their country instead of preventing them from leaving. Most of them require at least two injections with the controversial vaccine, regardless of the fact that you can still get Covid-19 and spread the virus. Above all, this decision comes at a time when the Omicron variant is taking over and, according to previous data, appears to be much milder.
The question of what it means to be “fully” vaccinated against Covid-19 is a sticking point for governments trying to pass a coherent set of rules. For example, countries such as Israel have made booster vaccinations mandatory, which means that citizens who were previously considered fully vaccinated would have their vaccination passport withdrawn after the booster deadline. Other countries are left in the dark as they are forced to rely on the whims of foreign governments to draw up their own laws. In addition, it can happen again and again that travelers are turned away at the airports in the destination countries because some rules have changed overnight.
Will there be dictatorial conditions around the world soon?
Such restrictive measures would have been inconceivable until two years ago. Especially in the so-called liberal western democracies. However, all the restrictions on personal and economic freedom imposed by governments around the world have made it clear that even governments and parties that are now considered liberal are not afraid of locking up their citizens and deciding which companies are “essential” and which are not. And now, in addition to entry restrictions (even for their own citizens!), There could also be exit restrictions. Unthinkable? Well, lockdowns were unthinkable until a few months ago.