By FRANK JORDANS
BERLIN (AP) — The European Union will no longer recommend medical masks be worn at airports and on planes starting next week amid the easing of coronavirus restrictions across the bloc. Member states can still require them, however. The European Union Aviation Safety Agency and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control said they hoped the decision will mark “a big step forward in the normalization of air travel” for passengers and crews. They said Wednesday that the decision was partly taken due to “the levels of vaccination and naturally acquired immunity.” The new recommendations take effect on May 16. Rules for masks may still vary by airline beyond that date if they fly to or from destinations where the rules are different.