Spain, Greece and islands predicted to be left off green list

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Spain, Greece, France, Italy and their islands are not expected to make the UK government's 'green list' for travel under the new traffic light system.

Despite many of the islands having lower covid rates than the mainland they are still expected to be excluded from the green list.

Only a 'tiny handful' of countries including Gibraltar, Israel, Iceland, Portugal and Malta are expected to be on the 'green list' – reports Mirror Online.

Iago Negueruela, the Balearic’s tourism minister, told The Telegraph : "The British Government [should] take the epidemiological situation of separate regions into account, rather than different countries.

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"We have… the technology available to sequence the virus and its strains at a higher percentage than any other region [one of four factors set by the UK Government].

"We have made huge efforts to contain the pandemic, and the epidemiological figures for the Islands are among the best in Europe."

The ban on foreign holidays is expected to be lifted for people in England from May 17 as part of the next easing of coronavirus restrictions.

The traffic light system will be risk-based, with different rules for people returning to England depending on which list their destination is on.

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Peter Openshaw, Professor of Experimental Medicine at Imperial College London, told the Andrew Marr Show on Sunday the UK needed to be cautious and prepare.

When asked if people will be able to start going on holiday, he said: "Yes, within limits.

"It's so important that we do not drop our guard completely.

"We know it's perfectly likely there will be further outbreaks unless we use this time to be very cautious and prepare sensibly."

His comments come as Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said the list of nations where international travel will be permitted is "coming shortly".

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps confirmed for the first time last month that Brits will be able to book foreign holidays for later this summer.

The “permission to travel” form, and £5,000 fine for travelling without a valid reason like work or bereavement, will be dropped in late Spring.

Instead countries will be on either a green, amber or red list under a “traffic light” system with different restrictions by level of risk.

However, the date when this starts is yet to be confirmed, but it will be no earlier than May 17.

There will still be a string of restrictions and costs upon return to the UK and of course you could also face separate restrictions in each destination country.

A DfT spokesperson said“The Taskforce is working toward restarting international travel in a safe and sustainable way, from 17 May at the earliest. This will allow families and friends to reunite, and businesses to start thriving again, while ensuring we protect public health.

“As we have always said, we will confirm by early May if international travel can resume on 17 May and which countries will fall into which list determining the requirements for travel.”

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