south africa, new covid variant

After UK, Germany and Italy ban flights from South Africa over new Covid variant

Image Source : AP

People wait to get vaccinated at a shopping mall, in Johannesburg, South Africa

Highlights

  • Germany and Italy have also banned travel from South Africa to contain spread of new Covid variant.
  • A European Union’s executive also said that it wants to stop air travel from southern Africa.
  • U.K. announced ban on flights from South Africa, 5 other southern African countries earlier today.

After the United Kingdom, Germany and Italy have also banned travel from South Africa to contain the spread of new Covid variant with a large number of mutations, reported news agency AFP on Friday. 

A European Union’s executive also said that it wants to stop air travel from southern Africa to counter the spread of a new COVID-19 variant. EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said in a statement that she “proposes, in close coordination with the member states, to activate the emergency brake to stop air travel from the southern African region.”

A new coronavirus variant has been detected in South Africa that scientists say is a concern because of its high number of mutations and rapid spread among young people in Gauteng, the country’s most populous province.

A fourth spike of the coronavirus is hitting the 27-nation EU especially badly, with governments scrambling to tighten restrictions in an attempt to contain the spread. The flight ban proposal came in the wake of similar action from Britain on Thursday.

The U.K. announced that it was banning flights from South Africa and five other southern African countries effective at noon on Friday and that anyone who had recently arrived from those countries would be asked to take a coronavirus test.

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(with AP’s inputs)

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