Unilateral ban on US destroys families: ‘I have not seen my daughter in a year and a half’

Unilateral ban on US destroys families: 'I have not seen my daughter in a year and a half'
Zero image AFP
Image AFP

“Dear Mr. We have relatives we have not seen in the United States for a year and a half. We want to go there again. When will you make it possible? ‘

“Never asked for anything again,” says Marius van der Vegen. Seeing Joe Biden visit Europe in June, de Probent sent his cry for help to the White House. “Why can he go here, but I can’t go there?”

Her daughter lives in Michigan with her husband and children. “I’ve only seen them on screen for a year and a half. But the time difference plays a role. My daughter and her husband work all day. When the granddaughters are home, it’s midnight here. You know how it goes with the kids, they don’t always want to call grandparents. ”

He has already booked three flights in the hope that the ban will be lifted. He had to cancel every time. “When Europe opened its borders to the Americans in mid-June, I hoped we would get there soon.”

Problems on both sides

Ursula van der Leyne, the head of the European Commission, also thought when Brussels relaxed travel restrictions for Americans. It seems that the failure of the United States to repay with the same currency will lead to a diplomatic war. “It shouldn’t take weeks,” Van der Lion said last week. “We maintain that similar rules apply to those coming from both directions.” On Monday, the European Commission decided to open the borders to the Americans.

The US government has so far not mentioned at any time, except to reiterate that the embargo on the EU will be lifted ‘as soon as possible’. At the end of July, the travel ban was later extended without being seen.

This causes problems on both sides. “We can leave the United States, but we will not come back after that,” says Andrews Grippma. “Unless you stay in a non-Schengen country for two weeks like Mexico. It’s expensive and takes a lot of time. And we do not have many holidays in the United States.”

The Dutchman has been working for the Boston supermarket company Aholt-Telhais since October last year. In May I wanted to move to the Netherlands to transfer my mother to a nursing home. That is impossible. I can enter the Netherlands with isolation, but I cannot go back. My brother had to do everything, and it was painful.

Neighbors do

“We want to see the family now and take a vacation. But we have already moved our ticket three times. I did not dare to do that, the lawyers are advising against it. I do not have Green card (Permanent Residence Permit, Red.) Or US passport, temporary work permit only. My family depends on it. We live and work in the United States and having children here is a problem if we can’t go back to school. ”

Now that her American colleagues or neighbors can make the journey they want without any problems, Grippma wants to see America follow the EU example. Tickets are now on August 22nd. “But we have to move it again. I hope we can do it again this year. Then the kids only skip school for a week.

Empty Array Hall at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York.  Picture cartridge
Empty Array Hall at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York.Picture cartridge

The impact of the blockade is even greater for Schiphol and KLM, who benefit from shifting passengers from the United States to and from the United States at good times. “It depends on how we recover after the summer and when the United States will allow travel from Europe,” said KLM CEO Peter Elbers. Recently. The company now expects September.

Prohibition of flying

“Air travel is a problem for all European and American airlines,” says Marnix Freudma of the Bar Association. In 2019, 17 million passengers between the EU and the United States had revenues of $ 20.6 billion.

“It’s a shame that it was arranged one way, but not the other way around. North America absolutely needs to recover the plane, but it also needs to restore the economy and human contact.

Stories of forced corona segregation are rife on social media, with hashtags such as #liftthetravelban and #loveisnottourism. Stories like this: ‘I was in Costa Rica with my partner last week. He returned to the United States, and I to Europe. Not sure when we will meet again. ‘

Twan Lawn knows similar examples as secretary of the Dutch People’s Trust outside the Netherlands. “We are getting signals that people have been able to leave the United States, but have not been allowed back and are at risk of losing their jobs. It’s okay if you do not marry an American again. It is not possible to exclude people based on their nationality, especially if there are no good reasons for this.”

funeral rites

And then America is not tough. “Australia even bans travel. We have been told that people who want to visit a sick family member have been kept under control for so long that they can only come to the funeral. And it does not work. An exception must be made for tragic cases.

64-year-old Van der Weeken does not understand why the United States is so strict. “Why don’t they differentiate between holiday transport and family relationships? My wife and I have been vaccinated twice, and the Corona app is right, and that’s possible if we need to be tested too.

Now the trip is scheduled for October. “Then it’s granddaughter’s birthday. But I do not know if it will work. Otherwise, he is considering an alternative. That’s no exception. ”

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