A dramatic incident took place in Amsterdam Amsterdam Airport Schiphol aboard a flight that was to leave for Spain around 6 p.m. Sunday.
Just as the plane was about to take off, Dutch military police boarded the plane and abducted a married couple who fled a quarantine hotel for suspected carriers of the COVID-19 Omicron strain. in the Nederlands.
The identity of the detained couple has not been disclosed and it is not clear whether they were infected or simply quarantined as a precaution. The military handed them over to health officials to be sent to another quarantine center.
The Netherlands is on high alert after more than a dozen cases of the new Omicron COVID-19 variant were discovered among airline passengers – before the 27 EU member states agreed to temporarily ban travel from seven southern African countries on Friday.
All recent arrivals to the Netherlands from South Africa, as well as Botswana, Malawi, Lesotho, Eswatini, Namibia, Mozambique and Zimbabwe, had to be tested and quarantined until that their results are known, even if they are vaccinated.
Some 61 passengers out of a total of 624 have tested positive for COVID-19, so the Dutch National Institute of Health (RIVM) warned that “the new variant could be found in more test samples.”
“We will check if they comply with these rules,” Dutch Health Minister Hugo de Jonge said on Sunday, just hours before the escape attempt.