The resumption of the Covid-19 epidemic in China is “the source of legitimate concern for Europe”, French government spokesman Olivier Véran said on Wednesday, assuring, in response to protests from Beijing, that mandatory tests would be applied “without blinking an eye”.

“No country wants to witness an epidemic outbreak on its territory, not after all the efforts and sacrifices made for almost three years,” he said after the Council of Ministers.

Presenting a negative test dating back less than 48 hours on return or in the event of transit in China is “a common sense measure to protect our fellow citizens and which we take without blinking”, he explained.

“An operation was carried out at an airport” on Tuesday “with the carrying out of tests on asymptomatic passengers returning from China: one in three tests was positive, thus attesting to the need for the control measures that we are putting in place”, said emphasize the former Minister of Health.

Beijing on Tuesday deemed “unacceptable” the imposition of Covid tests by a dozen countries on travelers from China.

Also on Tuesday, a committee of health experts from the 27 members of the European Union (Health Security Committee) argued for the imposition of tests on travelers coming from China “by an overwhelming majority”.