Israel and the European Union agreed to mutually recognize each other's government-issued vaccine passports.
With several European countries and Israel both requiring proof of vaccination for its own residents to get into venues, the agreement – expected to come into effect in October – is designed to ease travel for vaccinated citizens.
According to Israel's foreign ministry, its own citizens would be granted access to “restaurants, cultural centers, public institutions and more” in Europe under this agreement.
But this move would also make it easier for European tourists to enter Israel, which has been closed to foreigners apart from a limited number of tour groups.
Nevertheless, the agreement does not apply to countries such as Portugal and Sweden, which currently bar Israeli tourists. Israel would also be able to bar residents from individual EU countries.
This is “an important step in laying the groundwork for a return to normal with regard to flight and tourism ties between Israel and the EU,” said Foreign Minister Yair Lapid.
The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.