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South African president calls for lifting of Omicron travel bans | News


South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has named on countries to “urgently” reverse “scientifically unjustified” vacation limits linked to the discovery of a new variant of the coronavirus.

His reviews on Sunday arrived as the hugely mutated variant – dubbed Omicron – continued spreading all over the world, with new circumstances determined in the Netherlands, Denmark and Australia.

Dozens of countries have blacklisted South Africa and its neighbours considering the fact that South African experts this week flagged the new variant. The World Well being Group (WHO) has specified Omicron a “variant of concern” that is potentially far more contagious than former variants.

“We call on all those people nations that have imposed vacation bans on our country and our southern African sister countries to instantly and urgently reverse their decisions,” Ramaphosa mentioned, in his first address to the nation given that the detection of Omicron.

“The prohibition of travel is not informed by science,” he included.

“The only detail the prohibition on journey will do is to further more hurt the economies of the impacted countries and undermine their capability to answer to, and get better from, the pandemic,” he added.

“These limitations are unjustified and unfairly discriminate from our place and our southern African sister nations.”

The abrupt grounding of flights has spooked South Africa’s critical tourism market, with booking cancellations increasing immediately following the announcement. The country’s tourism sector lost $10bn in bookings in 2020 for the reason that of a drop in overseas site visitors, and is believed to shed about $10m each individual week flights are suspended from crucial overseas tourist markets.

Reporting from Johannesburg, Al Jazeera’s Fahmida Miller stated there experienced been “a major sum of frustration” among the govt officers and members of the scientific local community above the vacation curbs.

“There is a lot of worry around what these vacation restrictions will mean [economically] for southern Africa as a location, in particular forward of the vacation period of time, when countless numbers of website visitors from Europe are predicted,” she claimed. “A good deal of anger from the…

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