Travel restrictions preventing entry into North Cyprus from countries with a serious outbreak of the mutated strain of Covid-19 for everyone with the exception of TRNC citizen have been eased, enabling foreign nationals with TRNC residency to return, it was reported last week.
The TRNC authorities reacting to pressure from foreign residents’ groups will allow foreigners with permanent residency in the TRNC, travelling from the United Kingdom, Denmark, the Netherlands, Brazil and South Africa to enter North Cyprus.
The decision was ratified last week, and confirmed in a NOTAM (formal notification) issued by the TRNC Transport Ministry to airlines and air and sea ports on Saturday, 30 January.
The TRNC, along with many other countries had imposed travel restrictions, after details of the more contagious variant of the coronavirus were discovered in December. Flights and travellers from countries with the mutation were banned.
Some countries, like Turkey, applied exemptions allowing their own citizens and foreigners with residency permits to enter. The Turkish Cypriot authorities, however, opted to permit TRNC citizens only to travel from these high risk countries.
There are considerable numbers of foreign residents, including a large British community living in North Cyprus. Many residents returned to the UK for Christmas, only to find that they were unable to return after new travel restrictions were imposed on December 23.
The British Residents Society and the Foreign Residents (TFR), online support group North Cyprus Expats Uncut Version, and two foreign resident’s associations based in North Cyprus, got involved, raising awareness of the situation and lobbied the TRNC government to enable the residents to return.