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Ryanair's anger over Nphet as flights axed

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Ryanair boss Eddie Wilson

Ryanair boss Eddie Wilson

AFP via Getty Images

Ryanair boss Eddie Wilson

Ryanair boss Eddie Wilson has hit out at Transport Minister Eamon Ryan and Nphet over the Covid-19 restrictions on international travel.

His criticisms yesterday came as Ryanair announced it will suspend flights from Cork, Shannon and Ireland West airports entirely from next Wednesday to December 12 amid a lack of demand.

Mr Wilson told the Oireachtas Transport Committee that Mr Ryan needs to "stop faffing around" and implement the EU's new traffic-light system for travel immediately.

And he criticised the National Public Health Emergency Team (Nphet) after comments by chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan that suggest Christmas homecomings are in doubt.

Mr Wilson argued that aircraft are the "safest place where people congregate" and he attacked Nphet claiming they "got it wrong" on care homes, meat factories and face masks.

"We lost this summer due to Government policy failures," Mr Wilson also claimed.

He urged Mr Ryan to implement the EU's traffic light system of green, orange and red-listed countries now.

Crisis

Later Mr Ryan insisted the Government was taking action to help the aviation sector and said the EU system will be implemented on November 8.

He told RTÉ Radio's Drivetime that from that date people coming from amber-listed countries would take a Covid-19 test before flying and this would mean they won't have to restrict their movement for 14 days.

He said people coming from red-listed countries could take a PCR test for Covid five days after arriving and would not have to restrict movement once they got a negative result.

It was put to Mr Ryan that he doesn't seem to have the confidence of the aviation industry.

The sector was "in a real crisis" but that's "a function of the virus and it is something that's happening right across the world", he said.

He said it was not to do with his handling of the situation.


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