Abela not among European leaders required to quarantine after French president gets COVID-19

French President Emanuel Macron has tested positive for coronavirus and sent several other European leaders into preventive quarantine but Malta’s Prime Minister is not one of them

Prime Minister Robert Abela attending the meeting of European leaders in Brussels
Prime Minister Robert Abela attending the meeting of European leaders in Brussels

Malta’s Prime Minister does not need to quarantine despite being at a Brussels summit with French President Emanuel Macron, who has tested positive for COVID-19.

Robert Abela was not identified as one of Macron’s contacts in the 48 hours before he tested positive, a government spokesperson told MaltaToday.

Several European leaders, including Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez and European Council President Charles Michel, have gone into preventive quarantine after Macron tested positive for coronavirus on 17 December.

The European Council summit which Abela attended was held in Brussels on the 10 and 11 December.

“The European Council has confirmed to the Office of the Prime Minister that, while the summit ended on Friday 11 December, President Macron was considered as a potential risk of contagion as of Monday evening 14 December. Therefore, the Prime Minister was not identified as one of the contacts in the previous 48 hours,” the spokesperson said.

Additionally, according to EU protocol, Abela is seated on opposite sides of Macron at the European Council.

“He [Abela] was not in direct contact with the French President, unlike other leaders who met him for working lunches or other meetings. Therefore, the Prime Minister has not been advised to go into preventive quarantine,” the spokesperson said.