- Germany finds suspected case of new COVID-19 variant, reported news agency AFP
- This variant is reported to have a significantly high number of mutations
- Medical experts, including WHO, warned against any overreaction before variant was studied.
Germany finds suspected case of new COVID-19 variant, reported news agency AFP on Saturday quoting a regional official. News agency Reuters also reported that the Czech Republic is examining a suspected case of the Omicron variant of the coronavirus detected in a person who spent time in Namibia, quoting the National Institute of Public Health.
Earlier, in response to the variant’s discovery in southern Africa, the United States, Canada, Russia and a host of other countries joined the European Union in restricting travel for visitors from that region, where the variant brought on a fresh surge of infections.
The White House said the US will restrict travel from South Africa and seven other countries in the region beginning Monday. Biden said that means “no travel” to or from the designated countries except for returning US citizens and permanent residents who test negative.
Medical experts, including the WHO, warned against any overreaction before the variant was thoroughly studied. But a jittery world feared the worst after the tenacious virus triggered a pandemic that has killed more than 5 million people around the globe.
“We must move quickly and at the earliest possible moment,” British Health Secretary Sajid Javid told lawmakers.
Amid rising concern about a new COVID-19 variant 'Omicron' first detected in South Africa, India also added several countries to the list from where travellers would need to follow additional measures on arrival in India, including post-arrival testing for infection.
The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare adds Hong Kong and Israel to the list of countries from where travellers would need to follow additional measures on arrival in India, including post-arrival testing considering the detection of new COVID variant 'Omicron' in South Africa.
Countries from where the travellers would need to follow additional measures on arrival in India are South Africa, Brazil, Bangladesh Botswana, China, Mauritius, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, Singapore, Israel, Hong Kong, countries in Europe including the UK.
This variant is reported to have a significantly high number of mutations, and thus, has serious public health implications for the country, in view of recently relaxed visa restrictions and opening up of international travel.