Brazil Tourism Banked on non-vaccinated travelers: No more!

Brazil’s travel and tourism industry had been banking on massive numbers of travelers from abroad to visit this South American country.

The reason? Brazil had no restrictions for non-vaccinated travelers, and Brazil, where the summer season is starting has been a favorite among non-vaccinated travelers,

With a stroke of a pen, a Brazilian Supreme Court justice put a stop to this ruling, that all foreign passport holders arriving in Brazil must provide proof of vaccination against COVID-19

The decision from Luis Roberto Barroso on Saturday challenges a more lenient rule announced by the government of President Jair Bolsonaro, who has opposed mandatory immunization against the virus that can cause COVID-19.

Barroso’s ruling must be reviewed by all 11 judges of the Supreme Court next week.

The federal government announced on Tuesday that travelers arriving in Brazil did not have to produce a vaccine passport, though they would have to undergo a five-day quarantine.

The government later delayed the regulation for a week, due to a hacker attack on the Health Ministry on Friday.

The justice said the requirement for proof of vaccination could be waived only when the traveler comes from a country where no vaccines are available or the individual was prevented from vaccination due to health reasons.

Brazil’s president sees such a regulation as a restriction of freedoms.

Where is our freedom? I’d rather die than lose my freedom,” Bolsonaro said on Tuesday.

More than 616,000 people have died of COVID-19 in Brazil, the country with the second most deaths from the disease.

The pandemic has skyrocketed in recent months and the nation’s seven-day average is approaching 200 deaths a day. But many of Brazil’s major cities, including Rio de Janeiro, have either canceled or scaled back their New Year’s Eve festivities due to fears of a new outbreak of the virus.

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